‘Emma’(1996): Star-Studded Cast (aka Jeremy Northam) Brings Alive the Witty Austen Classic


‘Emma’(1996): Star-Studded Cast (aka Jeremy Northam) Brings Alive the Witty Austen Classic

It’s happened. I’ve finally succeeded in reviewing all three of the primary adaptations of Jane Austen’s Emma. Where did this happen? Over on Silver Petticoat of course. Within a month (give or take), I revisited all three of the best known adaptations of Emma. Beginning with A&E’s (my mother’s favorite), and then moving onto the most recent which is BBC’s before ending with the first I ever saw: Miramax’s version starring Jeremy Northam. Not only was this my first exposure to the witty side of Austen (I really think Emma is her most humorous, tongue in cheek story), but this may have been my first introduction to Austen, period. For these reasons, I do adore this adaptation and honestly, have a kind of attachment to it. emma (1996)

DISCUSSION | Faces of a Romance Adaptation: The One All About Emma.

‘Emma’(1996): Star-Studded Cast (aka Jeremy Northam) Brings Alive the Witty Austen Classic
‘Emma’ (1996): Star-Studded Cast (aka Jeremy Northam) Brings Alive the Witty Austen Classic. Talking up the charms that is the Miramax adaptation of 'Emma'! #Movies #PeriodDrama #MovieArchives Click To Tweet

Overall, I probably prefer the BBC miniseries for a variety of reasons, but gosh, this version is wonderful in its own way. Plus, guys, I’m sorry but NO ONE does the “badly done, Emma” speech like Jeremy Northam. Just sayin’.

If you want to read the review, you can find a snippet (as is the norm) down below and find the link to the complete review.

Emma (1996) Film Review: Jeremy Northam Stars as Mr. Knightley

For many years, this adaptation of Emma – from writer and director Douglas McGrath – easily won my heart as the favorite in a crowd of other interpretations of this witty Austen classic. I think the primary reason can be attributed to this being the first version of the classic love story I’d seen. The more recent BBC version was merely an idea at the time and I wasn’t aware of A&E’s retelling as of yet. Because of these factors, I’d already seen this several times before introduction to any other versions. Grouped in with the lineup of other period dramas Miramax released during the ’90s, this version is also flawed but still one of my favorites for reasons I shall attempt to put into words. Continue Reading ➔

If you want to, share your favorite memories, thoughts or opinions. Anything goes.

Photos: Miramax

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.


  1. Jeremy Northam was BORN to play Mr. Knightley in this film. This Emma was the first version I ever saw and it will always remain my favorite.
    I just watched it a couple days ago (for the umpteeith time) and decided that the profession of love/marriage proposal scene in this movie is literally in my Top 10 favorites of all time. Speaking of which, you should do a post on that… Top 10 Best [Love] Scenes. Or I could guest post for you sometime;) haha
    Either way, I'm glad you finally got around to reviewing this lovely Jane Austen film.

    1. He really was, Raquel… or in my imagined opinion of him, he is. ;) I've yet to read the book (as usual).

      Aw, that scene is darling! I agree. I really like the profession scene in the BBC Emma as well, so it'd come down to which I liked best… and you're right! A 10 Favorite (Best) Proposal/Love scene list would be fun and would in fact, fit in with my work on Silver Petticoat (as well as here). I love making things like that. As for a guest post, you're welcome to put together anything fun anytime. :)

      Thanks! Me too! I had such a good time reviewing all three of the primary adaptations for Emma. They're all lovely for their respective reasons.

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