Sense and Sensibility (1995)

Though over-praised even more than Ron Howard's good-but-not-that- 
good APOLLO 13, the last Jane Austen adaptation of the year (after  
CLUELESS and PERSUASION) is a sweet, stately affair.  The story  
stars Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet (HEAVENLY CREATURES) as two  
sisters-sans-dowries, anxious to be married even if their cash-flow  
problems may preclude same.  The suitors do come, of course, and all  
sorts of silliness ensues as everyone tries to figure out exactly  
who is engaged to whom. 
The charms of SENSE AND SENSIBILITY are many, thanks in great part  
to the warmth of a fine cast.  The stronger performances include  
Winset, Thompson, Alan Rickman, and Elizabeth Spriggs, my favorite,  
as the lively Mrs. Jennings.  Sure, Ms. Thompson is too old for her  
part, but she's a world better than the less-than-divine Hugh Grant.   
The stammering actor is too stiff the role of Bachelor Number One  
and his presence weakens one of the story's core relationships.   
Taiwanese director Ang Lee (EAT DRINK MAN WOMAN) directs from a  
screenplay by Thompson (!) that's very amusing.  In fact, the audi- 
ence that I saw this with laughed at almost every line, gesture, or  
action by the characters.  Perhaps the reason for so much praise is  
due, in part, to what this movie *isn't.*  SENSE AND SENSIBILITY is  
easy to like (and easy to recommend) because it doesn't contain any  
blood, bullets, hookers, strippers, cursing, swearing, superheroes,  
product plugs, sex, drugs, rock `n' roll, or other self-destructive  
behaviors.  (Rated "PG"/~135 min.) 

Copyright 1996 by Michael J. Legeros

Originally posted to triangle.movies

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