Why Lemony?
(the “About Me” page)

March 29, 2004

Jane Austen rip offs

Thoughts from trips to Blockbuster:
Have you ever noticed movies that lift the complete plot of a Jane Austen novel but don't give her even a passing nod of credit? Maybe they assume that their audience already knows the connection, so it would be stating the obvious- those that like 'light chic flicks' also read Austen? It's possible; I fit into that category; but the reasoning is kind of thin. I would think it would give the movies more credibility and be good publicity to acknowledge that it's a modern rewrite of a much older story. Am I wrong? Well, you can see them for yourself- 'Clueless' is the exact plot of 'Emma' (the book. I know it's also a movie), and 'Bridget Jones's Diary' is an fun rewrite of 'Pride and Prejudice' (I saw it for the first time last night and laughed out loud a lot). That's what I've noticed so far. Any others out there?

Posted by Bahiyyih at March 29, 2004 01:44 PM

I'm a big Austen fan as well and loved Bridget Jone's Diary because of it! Did you notice that they used the same actor for Mr. Darcy and for the character based off of Mr. Darcy's character in bj's diary? I have yet to find other modern movies based on Austen's storylines but there's a high school english teacher in my hometown who encourages students to write comparative papers on just this topic-- my sister is in her class. I'll see if she knows of any others...

Posted by: liza at March 29, 2004 05:28 PM


Posted by: Husayn at March 29, 2004 09:05 PM

Terminator?! What? And which novel would that be based on? I can't say that I've seen Terminator, but I would watch it if you say it has an Austen plot line.

Liza- I haven't seen that version of Pride and Prejudice, but that's hilarious. In an inside joke sort of way. I like the 1940 version with Greer Garson, it makes me laugh so hard. Once I watched it around Mikey (Wagner) and he came over to make fun of it but stayed to laugh at it and with it for the whole thing because it was such a silly parody.

Posted by: Bahiyyih at March 31, 2004 09:50 AM

Terminator?!? No, that's an obvious copy of the story of the Christ child.

Really! And Terminator 2 is the flight of the holy family. Some fellow undergrads and I (one of them Catholic in her upbringing and therefore sensitive to things like that) figured that out after seeing T2 one evening (free audience-test preview). Here are the parts that I remember:

* John Connor: notice initials (and a big deal is made about his name)
* Father not present / doesn't exist yet --> virgin birth
* Prophecy that he will save humanity from the machines
* Evil king sends cyborg to kill infant (okay, that's a little different from the Book's version)

And then the parallels are repeated and continue in T2. I don't remember all of them anymore, but once we realized it, they were striking.

I haven't seen T3, but I don't think its makers continued their practice of borrowing from religious history.

Posted by: Billy at April 3, 2004 04:16 PM

Yes, Terminator is definitely a futuristic version of the Christ child story. I remember pointing that out to a friend of mine (also Catholic) who really loved the movie and had not caught the parallel. She was somewhat annoyed. And strangely enough, I saw the A&E version of Pride and Prejudice on TV, with Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy and then, a couple months later, saw Bridget Jones' Diary and there he was again. As he's a favorite actor of mine, it was a plus for me, but I did wonder about his choice to do the same role, essentially, twice. I bet it was fun. I'm ashamed to admit it, but I think my favorite part of that film was when Mark Darcy, um, "punishes" the Hugh Grant character.

Posted by: Amy Eades at April 5, 2004 12:00 AM