`Becoming Jane,' a frippery, doesn't do Austen any favors

Anne Hathaway plays the English writer as someone almost too good to be true

Review C

August 03, 2007|By Michael Sragow | Michael Sragow,Sun Movie Critic

Becoming Jane isn't just a soap opera - it's a soft-soap opera. It tries to flatter audiences into accepting a fictionalized account of the real Jane Austen's love life as the basis for her novel Pride and Prejudice and, indeed, her entire literary output.

It isn't a jolly, inventive piece of japery like Shakespeare in Love, which had the light touch and witty bravado to expand our pleasure in Shakespeare's plays by embroidering on them.

Becoming Jane (Miramax) Starring Anne Hathaway, James McAvoy, Julie Walters, Maggie Smith, Laurence Fox. Directed by Julian Jarrold. Rated PG. Time 113 minutes.

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