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|It depends on what you value most in novels and adaptations
Written by Tom P2
(10/26/2010 3:58 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, I did say...., penned by Rachel G
I value the voice of the narrator in Mansfield Park at least as highly as any character. When the story comes to the screen, it's all too easy to lose the narrator's words in translation. MP2 does the best preservation job by far. It's at the cost of a change to Fanny's characterisation, yes, but I see that as a lesser issue, especially as MP2 ends up with strong internal coherence. My ideal Mansfield Park adaptation would have a separate narrator, like NA2 but perhaps not confined to the very beginning and end.
We seem to disagree -- probably in a Loud Contradictions At Fifty Paces kind of way -- which I'm completely OK with -- about most of the details you mentioned: the extent of the lechery and lesbianism, whether there's much morality in it that doesn't concern slavery, and whether the adjustment of Henry Crawford is a good thing. I first came to the novel via MP2, and was disappointed to find the character-sinking "make a small hole in Fanny Price's heart" part, because I particularly enjoy seeing his precarious balance between right and wrong in the movie.
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