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UK: Buena Vista
Cast: Embeth Davidtz, Jonny Lee Miller, Alessandro Nivola, Frances O'Connor, Harold Pinter, Lindsay Duncan, Sheila Gish, James Purefoy, Hugh Bonneville, Justine Waddell, Victoria Hamilton, Sophia Myles, Hilton McRae, Hannah Taylor-Gordon, Charles Edwards, Benny Pest
Director: Patricia Rozema
USA: 110 mins
UK: 112 mins
USA Rated: PG-13 for brief violent images, sexual content and drug use
UK Certificate: 15 for one brief but strong sex scene and violent drawings
USA Release Date: 19 November 1999
UK Release Date: 31 March 2000
Patricia Rozema's daring adaption of Mansfield Park is a witty look at romance and reality, Jane Austen-style. Rozema has taken Jane Austen's third and most controversial novel and infused its lead character with the irrepressible essence of Austen's own life and writings. The result is an original portrait of a strong-willed, spirited heroine at its center who a la Austen attempts to outsmart a dizzying labyrinth of marriage and social status - without compromising her ideals or her heart. This is the story of Fanny Price, who emerges from this comedic maze of manners having discovered the rightness of one true love.
Fanny Price is 10 years old when she is shipped from her rat-infested, Portsmouth home to live with her wealthy relatives The Bertrams in Mansfield Park. Seen as inferior to her aristocratic family, Fanny is reminded daily that the other family members have every advantage over her. The only flickers of kindness amidst this prejudice emerge from Edmund, who shares Fanny's passion for dreams and storytelling, as well as her uncommon sensitivity. At Mansfield Park, Fanny pours her amusing insights, deep feelings and fierce intelligence into secret letters, journals and other writings, sharing them only with Edmund.
The grown up Fanny is alluring, vital and with a tongue as sharp as a guillotine. This is the Fanny Price who greets Henry and Mary Crawford, a modern thinking, dangerously charming brother and sister pair from London who set off sparks the moment they arrive at Mansfield Park. As Fanny becomes the must-have object of Henry Crawford's affections, her status is radically uplifted. But when Henry Crawford proposes to Fanny, she must make an agonizing decision. Her actions throw Mansfield Park into a comic tailspin of adultery, betrayal and truth-telling, from which will emerge, among other things, a deliciously reluctant romance that slowly simmers to a union of true love.