The Jane Austen Book Club

May I recommend a movie whose target audience is book lovers?  It’s The Jane Austen Book Club (2007), starring Kathy Baker, Hugh Dancy, and Maria Bello.  The story revolves around a group of friends who decide to read all the novels of Jane Austen together and discuss them.  As you might expect, the group itself begins to function very much like the characters in any of Austen’s novels.  If that idea appeals to you (as it does to me), then this movie is for you.

The cast also includes Maggie Grace (pre- all those Taken movies), Amy Brenneman and Jimmy Smits (who passed each other like ships in the night between seasons one and two of NYPD Blue), and the lovely Emily Blunt, who used her role in this film as a springboard to some better work.

The Jane Austen Book Club is by no means a great movie, but it is a good one.  The cast does a fine job creating the atmosphere of a real club, and they rather boldly attempt to body forth the difficult subtext of Austen’s novels themselves–a world in which nothing appears to happen, but everything does.


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