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PRIDE AND PREJUDICE

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It's a timeless story -- will the star-crossed lovers unite? -- but told with such wit and clever observation that Jane Austen's novel of social manners easily supports yet another adaptation. Joe Wright's film is lovely and well made, with location shooting in old English manors, and marvelous fluid camerawork that'll have you truly immersed in the social swirl. Keira Knightley's 21st-century modernity crossed with fragrant English rose is well suited for her turn as the sharp-tongued but dutiful Lizzie, and, as Mr. Darcy, relative newcomer Matthew McFadyen's smoldering dark looks, infuriating haughtiness and tender pains are sure to have the cheap seats swooning. Rounding out an excellent cast are Donald Sutherland and Brenda Blethyn as the squabbling Mr. and Mrs. Bennet, and Judi Dench as Lady Catherine De Bourgh. (AH)

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