Let me just interrupt your regularly scheduled programming and say stop what you are doing & GO NOW!! It boggles my mind how one of the best movies I've seen in years is not playing in a full theater release. So find a theater, get a babysitter, and make it happen you won't forget it.
We drove an hour last night to catch 'Love & Friendship' at the Grandin Theatre in Roanoke & once I got over the creepy gargoyles inside the old place, we were in for a treat. You may not have even heard about the movie, so let me enlighten you, as any good Austen addict should do.
The movie title is a bit misleading since it's really about her novella 'Lady Susan'. She did write as a teenager in journals, one of which was written as a series of letters which she entitled 'Love & Freindship'. Yes, I promise I know how to use spell-check, but thats how she spelled friendship back in the day. The director & all the smart Hollywood types figured that the regular public would more easily identify a movie as being one by Jane Austen if there was the typical '&' in the title, so they switched out the names. Pride & Predjudice. Sense & Sensibility. Love & Friendship. You get the idea. Lady Susan didn't really fit the mold, especially since it's not nearly as famous as Emma or Persuasion.
I don't want to give away the plot because you just have to see the wit & situational humor for yourself. But if you think Mr. Collins was a quirky soul, then you won't believe Sir James Martin in Love & Friendship. Never have I seen a sillier character so perfectly portrayed. Lydia Bennett has nothing on him. In classic Austen style, the clergyman is less than astute, there's a scandal thrown in, & who to marry is always about the money and position.
Let's just say that I'm pretty sure this movie has moved into second place of my all-time favorite Austen adaptations, just behind the 1995 BBC Pride & Prejudice, and narrowly edging out my favorite of her books in the 1995 version of Persuasion. So you need to see it. Trust me.
Even my husband, who I would say borderline loathes all things Austen, in his review after the movie, said "It's tolerable I suppose". Ok, not really. I gave him that line. I'm sure Mrs. Bennett would have approved.