adaptation, containing my fangirl excitement wasn’t a possibility. This
particular adaptation imagines how Austen’s little-known novella, Lady Susan, should be told on a larger stage.
best. She leaves a string of broken hearts, and colors outside the lines of
propriety. Or so the gossip says. But the facts remain Lady Susan does leave
her prior residence in the wake of scandal. Through it all is her good friend
and confident Alicia (Chloë Sevigny), a woman who married for money, of course;
and her reluctant, shy daughter, Frederica (Morfydd Clark).
relocates to her brother’s estate for a period of time. While living among
their society she begins the chase anew with the much younger, Reginald De
Courcy (Xavier Samuel). Complications beyond Lady Susan’s schemes arise when
her daughter arrives, bringing with her a precipitously rebellious heart.
Romantic Moment of the Week | Lizzy Bennet and Col. Fitzwilliam Darcy
(at the time a month or better past its home entertainment release). It’s with
regret that I have to report, Love and
Friendship isn’t up to the task of exceptional Austen adaptations. Helmed
by Wit Stillman, the style of this isn’t quite what I expected which completely
threw me. As a Georgian film, this steps away from Austen’s usual comfort zone
of Regency era, which I do love. It puts an entirely new spin on an Austen film
with a new sense of freedom (and playful fun). Sadly, this freedom is all well
and good for many reasons, but the style in which this is shot is not one of
awkward. What it is I cannot place my finger on, but it’s there. As I sat down
to write this review after weeks of pondering the story, I found I couldn’t
remember a great deal about it. This gave me pause. To me, this says this isn’t
a terribly memorable (for me) story, and that made me sad. This inspired a bit
of “refresher” Google searching (because Google knows everything) and I was
quickly reminded of who everyone was if not entirely the conclusions of each
enough, and feel confident enough to push ahead with this review.)
the reason the film undertakes these stylings. As is the usual Austen style, the
characters have flair and personality like none other. This leads me to the
actors. Everyone is top of the line. From the supporting cast brimming with new
talent to Chloë Sevigny, everyone puts their best foot forward. Although none
surpass Kate Beckinsale, who is wickedly good in her role as the (mostly)
unlikable, Lady Susan. No stranger to period pieces, Beckinsale was able to
tap into some of her Emma Woodhouse (from A&E’s Emma) characteristics with this role. What works so well is that
she, somehow, makes us like her. Just a little bit.
poke fun at society or its players, then Love
& Friendship is a darn good time. It’s got the usual “wicked” sense of
humor we’re so accustomed to from Austen adaptations, but the cast goes a long
way in endearing this.