Mansfield Park: Rozema Adapts Jane Austen’s Romantic Drama

Adapted from a novel by Jane Austen, this period romantic drama, set in the early 1800s is directed by Patricia Rozema, who had made a splash with her film “I Hear the Mermaids Singing.”

The tale, as most of you know, centers on Fanny (Hannah Taylor Gordon), a girl  raised by loving but poor parents. Wanting a better life for Fanny, they send her away to live with her aunts, high-minded Mrs. Norris (Sheila Gish) and the drug-addicted Lady Bertram (Lindsay Duncan), who share an estate called Mansfield Park.

Fanny joins the family at Mansfield Park, which includes Lady Bertram’s husband Sir Thomas (Harold Pinter), who made his money in slaves and West Indian plantations; Sir Thomas’s son Tom (James Purefoy), an alcoholic; Tom’s intelligent younger brother Edmund (Jonny Lee Miller); and his two sisters, Julia (Justine Waddell) and Maria (Victoria Hamilton).

In time, Fanny grows to adulthood (now played by Frances O’Connor) and gains skill and poise as a horsewoman while developing her skills as an author. When the secretive siblings Henry and Mary Crawford (Alassandro Nivola and Embeth Davidtz) arrive at Mansfield Park, all kinds of romantic occur.  The two sisters fight over Henry, while Mary is engaged to wed Edmund, disappointing Fanny, who has fallen in love with him.

MPAA: PG-13.

 

Patricia Rozema

Patricia Rozema, based on the novel by ane Austen.

Nov 24, 1999

July 11, 2000

Released by Miramax

Cast

Frances O’Connor as Fanny Price

Jonny Lee Miller as Edmund Bertram

Alessandro Nivola as Henry Crawford

Embeth Davidtz as Mary Crawford