Boudica was not one of those women. In AD 60, she led a rebellion against Rome that, unfortunately failed. But where that rebellion failed, her legend began.
In 2003, a TV movie entitled Warrior Queen hit the small screen. Starring Alex Kingston as the legendary Queen, the TV movie told the story of Boudica and her quest to rid Great Britain of the Roman conquerors.
I learned about Boudica quite a few years ago. Boudica is to Great Britain as the Founding Fathers are to the United States. She is a national hero revered for her strength and courage as a leader of her people. She is an icon. The problem with this adaptation of her story is that screen writer Andrew Davies (who wrote the screenplay for one of my favorite miniseries, the 1995 Pride and Prejudice), just missed the mark as far as I am concerned. The issue is that while Boudica’s life story is more myth than fact, Davies seemed to rely more on the myth than the known facts.
*-Contains spoilers about Pride and Prejudice. Do not read if you have not finished either the book or the miniseries.
Even if your not a fan of Jane Austen Or Pride and Prejudice, you know the lake scene. The one where Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy, strips down to his underthings and dives into the water.
While it is not in the book, screenwriter Andrew Davies chose to include in the screen play of the 1995 Pride and Prejudice miniseries.
Colin Firth, both in and out of character is easy on the eyes, making the scene that much more fun to watch.
But what I love about this scene is that Austen does a complete 180 with her leading couple. Both are equally shell shocked by the turn of events. Fitzwilliam Darcy expected Elizabeth Bennet to immediately and without hesitation accept his marriage proposal. What he didn’t expect was her out and out rejection. Elizabeth, upon receiving the letter following the failed marriage proposal, begins to re-evaluate her opinion of him.
Their fateful meeting at Pemberley sets the stage for their real courtship. He does not expect visitors, and she does not expect him or Georgiana to be home. There is a sense of beginning of an emotional intimacy, of being open to the other person and the possibilities that life with that other person will be like.
Sometimes we take what we think is a wrong path, but in the end, it leads us right where we are meant to be.
Sense and Sensibility was Jane Austen’s first published novel. Writing under the pseudonym of “a lady”, Sense and Sensibility is the story of two sisters, Elinor and Marianne Dashwood. When their father passes away, their elder brother inherits the family estate, Norland Park. Knowing that Norland Park is no longer their home, Elinor and Marianne, with their mother and younger sister Margaret are forced to find a new home and make a new life elsewhere.
As I did with the other novels, I’m going to compare and contrast the most recent adaptations.
Cast: Elinor (Emma Thompson), Marianne (Kate Winslet), Colonel Brandon (Alan Rickman), Edward Ferrars (Hugh Grant) and John Willoughby (Greg Wise) .
Pro’s: Directed by Ang Lee, with a screenplay by Emma Thompson, the 1995 movie retains Austen’s voice as a writer. It is a charming movie, for both the general movie fan and the ardent Janeite. Greg Wise looks awful good in breeches.
Cons: Let’s face it, as good as an actress and a screenwriter Emma Thompson is, she was far from 19 when this movie was made. Elinor is still a teenager, regardless of the actress stepping into her shoes.
Cast: Elinor (Hattie Morahan), Marianne (Charity Wakefield), Colonel Brandon (David Morrisey), Edward Ferrars (Dan Stevens) and John Willoughby (Dominic Cooper).
Pro’s: With a screenplay written by Andrew Davies and the younger characters played by a whose who of young British actors, this adaptation has a lot going for it. Davies fleshes out secondary story lines that that makes the primary story line vibrant and alive. I also like is that the cast is age appropriate.