Mansfield Park (1999) short review

The only “off” Austen adaptation of the 1990s, mostly because of changes from the tone/story of the original book, some of which succeed and some of which don’t.  I like the incorporation of Jane Austen’s juvenile writings and the spunk-ification of Fanny (probably one of the most retiring of Austen’s characters, although readers of the book will understand that that has a purpose missed in this film), but didn’t enjoy the attempts to make the movie darker and more erotic than the book.  The costuming is definitely Hollywood-ized, with Fanny in weird jumper/shirt combinations that I’ve never seen in the period and Mary Crawford in VERY modern fabrics/cuts.  Maria and Julia Bertram (played by the fabulous Justine Waddell) get some great gowns, however, and there’s a great appearance by the VERY fabulous Sophia Myles as Fanny’s younger sister.

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Kendra

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Kendra has been a fixture in the online costuming world since the late 1990s. Her website, Démodé Couture, is one of the most well-known online resources for historical costumers. In the summer of 2014, she published a book on 18th-century wig and hair styling. Kendra is a librarian at a university, specializing in history and fashion. She’s also an academic, with several articles on fashion history published in research journals.

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