Sense and Sensibility (1995) ****1/2
Directed by Ang Lee
Without a doubt, Sense and Sensibility has one of the best casts in film history. Just listen to this group of names: Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, Hugh Grant, Imelda Staunton, Tom Wilkinson, Hugh Laurie and Alan Rickman. Ang Lee’s direction is superb. This, along with Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and
For me, the best part about Sense and Sensibility was being introduced to Jane Austin’s perfectly crafted love story! Similar to many
Despite the list of top notch British actors, I felt the weakness of the film lies in many of the performances themselves.
Also, I didn’t feel like Thompson nor Winslet reached their potentials in these performances. Winslet comes across as mean, prickly and spoiled. I was not rooting for her at all. Thompson underplays her character most of the time to the point where she tends to be the blandest element in many scenes.
Finally, I like the guy, but Hugh Grant is absolutely awful and he and Thompson have no chemistry at all together. Grant’s idea of playing an upper class, insecure stiff is to stand like he’s upper class, insecure and stiff. I felt like he would get a neck cramp if he continued to stand that way. Further, the way he walked looked like he bought underwear a few sizes too small.
So, yes, Sense and Sensibility could have been acted better. Still, the direction is perfect! The screenplay is perfect! The mood is perfect! Many in the supporting cast (especially the great Alan Rickman) are perfect! That’s enough perfects to make the film a winner!