At Pasadena’s Arclight starting August 16, “Austenland” is a chick flick per excellence. Based on the novel by Shannon Hale (who also co-wrote the script), it tells the story of a 30-something single woman, Jane Hayes (played by Keri Russell) who is obsessed with all things Jane Austen.
Her obsession leads her to use of all her savings on a trip to an English resort that caters to Austen lovers like herself, where some hired folks talk, dress, eat, and attend dance balls just like in Austen’s books, under the direction of a Mrs. Wattlesbrook (played by Jane Seymour).
Honestly, the first half of the movie is on this side of corny. But it picks up well on the second half.
J.J. Field plays Mr. Henry Nobley, who is the enchanting gentleman that must exist in every Austen story and who is rather adorable in “Austenland,” especially while in his period clothing. Along with Miss Elizabeth Charming (Jennifer Coolidge) the cast creates fun moments that makes the audience laugh and that poke a bit of fun on those who, be it publicly or secretly, can’t have enough of “Sense and Sensibility.”
If you are hesitant about the subject matter, perhaps knowing who was involved in the film’s creation will seal the deal. “Austenland” was co-written and directed by Jerusha Hess, whose work you have already seen in “Napoleon Dynamite” and “Nacho Libre,” and it was produced by bestselling author and film producer Stephenie Meyer (“Twilight”).
“Austenland” is a light romantic comedy that Austen fans should get a kick out of. It is PG-13 and 97 minutes long.
The Arclight Pasadena is located at 336 East Colorado Blvd. See more at www.arclightcinemas.com
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