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Mansfield Park

Julia Joyce , Douglas Hodge , Iain B. MacDonald    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 29.99
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Mansfield Park + Masterpiece: Northanger Abbey + Persuasion
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Most helpful customer reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Too short, but not as bad as everyone says! May 31 2009
I confess that I read all the reviews on here before I ever watched this, which set my expectations EXTREMELY low. Even so, this rendition is really not as bad as everyone says. In my opinion all its faults are due to it's absurdly brief run time: 86 minutes is hardly enough time to tell the simplest of Jane Austen's stories, much less her most complex. As a result, many scenes from the story are removed, and the plots and relationships seem to progress at at a breakneck speed. However, the acting and script are good, and while the plot is greatly condensed, I did not find it difficult to follow in the least. The biggest surprise for me was Billie Piper, who plays Fanny. After everyone on here trashed her performance and anachronistic appearance, I had steeled myself for a breathy trollop. However, her rather tarty appearance on the cover is quite misleading: although she does possess very bold looks (her features, blond hair, and considerable bust) her character is vibrant, carefree, and innocent, and quite a delight to watch. Compared to the 2005 film adaptation of this novel, which added a creepy sexual undertone to practically every scene, and focused much more on the darker elements of the story, this one is bright, bubbly, and adorable. It is very similar in tone to the recent Masterpiece Theatre version of Northanger Abbey, which also suffered from being too short but was altogether delightful. For a lighter, more exuberant, Austen than is usually found on film, I would urge you to give this a try.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I hope she didn't quit her day job... April 14 2008
Truth be told, this version should not have been done at all. The matter is that the story rests on the shoulders of Fanny. Unfortunately, ITV (not the BBC) did an appalling casting job with Billie Piper, whom, I am glad to say, is better known as a signer than an actress, and my guess is this particular program won't change that view one bit. She is so unconvincing that many of the other members of the cast end up looking like they are either overacting (when they're not) or truly disinterested in the fate of their characters, through no fault of their own. Even though I am quite keen on all things Austen, I have to say this one would only be worth your while if you've seen everything else, you have way too much time on your hands and it's been raining for days on end. Otherwise, you probably have better things to do...
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Great Disappointment Jan. 28 2008
By Celluloidphile TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Unfortunately, this version of Mansfield Park is the worst I have seen in the latest BBC series (2007) of the Austen novels. Like most, it rushes along at breakneck speed sacrificing character and plot development. Moreover,the principal character, Fanny, is sadly miscast. She is portrayed almost like a trollop. This viewer had no sympathy for her and wonders how Edmund could possibly favour her over Miss Crawford. Other characters are basically one dimensional. The location and sets create some mild interest, but if you want to see a decent film adaptation there is a far superior version done in 1999.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Miscast Fanny Jan. 24 2010
Fanny is a poor ten-year old girl who has been sent away to live with her wealthy relatives at their home, Mansfield Park. There, her only friend is her cousin Edmond, whom she grows to love. When she is 18, new neighbors Henry and Mary Crawford come into her life; Henry has eyes for Fanny while Edmond is smitten with Mary.

This Masterpiece Theatre version of Jane Austen's novel was really disappointing. The biggest problem was the casting of Billie Piper as Fanny. Her always-disheveled, bottle blonde hair and inexplicably black eyebrows weren't true to the period and she acted too modern and low class; none of her dialogue was believable because she looked so wrong for the part. She would have been better as a naughty chambermaid than someone brought up in an aristocrat's home. Another victim of inaccurate hair and make-up was Hayley Atwell (Mary Crawford) who had a 2007 hair style and sculpted eyebrows which were lovely, but completely wrong for the time. Her casual speech and flirtatious actions would have had no place in formal Regency society.

The actors playing Fanny's aunt and uncle were too young and lacked a lord and lady's proper breeding. And the waltz danced in the final scene would certainly have shocked onlookers, if indeed it were even known at that time, but there was only pleasant reaction to the dance. All in all, this misguided film is visually distracting and sadly unconvincing.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars When the BEEB gets it wrong! March 25 2008
What can I say? This production of Mansfield Park actually left me speechless. The script department so heavily edited Jane Austen's book that we are left with very little. Had I not read the book, I wouldn't have had a clue why Fanny was placed in the care of her aunt and uncle or, indeed, what her connection to them actually was. While watching it, I thought it had to get better in that respect - it didn't. None of the characters were well illustrated at all. The location was good, as were the costumes but, apart from that, this one was badly miscast and I was not truly engaged by any of the performances. Blake Ritson's "Edmund" was just plain wrong. Edmund is a character with warmth and at least a little charisma - probably better looking too! Well, don't look for that in this version - THIS Edmund is rather cool and disconnected. I couldn't imagine him being passionate about anything (or anyone). As for Fanny Price..... this was a horrible interpretation of the character. I don't think it was entirely Billie Piper's fault. She probably did the best she could with what she was given. She just wasn't given very much and, to be honest, she just didn't look the part.

Sorry, Auntie BBC, you just got it totally wrong with this one and I really don't recommend it. Read the book!
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie
I really enjoyed this movie...if you're feeling in the mood for a good story on a rainy day curled up with you favorite blanket..... this movie is for you.
Published 19 months ago by Yolanda M Andrews
5.0 out of 5 stars English drama
It was the first time I had heard of this DVD, enjoyed the movie very much, finishes my collection of English dramas.
Published on Nov. 22 2010 by Gayle Bray
5.0 out of 5 stars Delighted
This is a fine production with exceptional script, brilliant acting, lovely costumes and sets and imaginative editing and cinematography. Read more
Published on Sept. 28 2010 by M. MacInnes
4.0 out of 5 stars A good, although very short adaptatiom
After watching this adaptation, I was pleasantly surprise by the movie. Yes, a lot was cut out, I believe that the essential parts of the story was told and , you fall in love with... Read more
Published on June 17 2009 by S. Karagiannis
1.0 out of 5 stars Ridicule!
Je n'ai vraiment pas aimé cette version de Mansfield Park. Le casting de Fanny est une vraie farce. Read more
Published on April 2 2008 by I. Gagne
2.0 out of 5 stars Ordinaire.
Je n'ai pas été impressionnée par cette version de Mansfield Park, quoiqu'elle respecte beaucoup plus le livre que la version de 1999 avec Johnny Lee Miller et... Read more
Published on Jan. 16 2008 by Globule82
2.0 out of 5 stars Not of Viewing Pleasure
This particular adaption of Mansfield Park did nothing for me. I'm not sure if it was the lead acotrs or what? Read more
Published on Jan. 1 2008 by YANNERS
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