Watch Pride and Prejudice
- 1 hr 57 min
Pride and Prejudice is a classic romantic drama film from 1940, directed by Robert Z. Leonard and starring Greer Garson as Elizabeth Bennet and Laurence Olivier as Mr. Darcy. The movie is based on Jane Austen's novel of the same name, which has become a quintessential work of English literature. The story is set in the early 19th century in rural England, where the Bennet family lives in a modest but comfortable estate. Mrs. Bennet (Mary Boland) is determined to have her five daughters married off to wealthy suitors, as this is the only way they can secure their future. Elizabeth, the second eldest, is witty and independent, and often at odds with her mother's matchmaking schemes.
One day, when a gentleman named Mr. Bingley moves into the neighborhood, it's clear that he is looking for a wife. The Bennet sisters all attend a ball where they meet him and his haughty friend, Mr. Darcy. Elizabeth is immediately set against the latter, believing him to be an arrogant and cold-hearted snob. Mr. Darcy, in turn, is intrigued by Elizabeth, but is reluctant to show his admiration due to her lower social status.
As the story progresses, we see the Bennet sisters navigate the tricky waters of courtship, and Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy's relationship becomes more complicated as they butt heads several times. Meanwhile, Mr. Bingley seems to be falling in love with one of the sisters, but his friend Mr. Darcy is determined to keep them apart, and Elizabeth's initial dislike of him only grows stronger.
The movie captures the era perfectly, with lavish costumes and sets that transport the viewer to regency England. The acting is superb, with Greer Garson bringing a refreshing energy to Elizabeth, making her a fierce yet charming heroine. Laurence Olivier is similarly impressive as Mr. Darcy, gradually peeling back his layers to reveal a more vulnerable and passionate side.
The chemistry between the two leads is palpable, and their scenes together crackle with tension as they volley barbs at each other. The supporting cast is also strong, with Mary Boland playing the flustered Mrs. Bennet to perfection, and the other Bennet sisters providing some much-needed levity to the story.
One of the highlights of the movie is the witty and incisive dialogue, lifted straight from Austen's book. The characters' observations on social norms and expectations are just as relevant today as they were centuries ago, and watching Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy navigate their way through a minefield of societal pressures and expectations is both poignant and entertaining.
Overall, Pride and Prejudice is a timeless classic that is just as enjoyable today as it was in 1940. The movie's themes of love, class, and societal norms are universal, and the impeccable performances and stunning visuals make it an enduring masterpiece of romantic cinema.
Pride and Prejudice is a 1940 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 57 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.4 and a MetaScore of 84.