Posted by Kathy F. on August 31, 1997 at 23:39:39:
In reply to Re: I watched Emma2 again (long post alert) posted by Peggy Haley on August 30, 1997 at 04:24:46
] Has anyone here seen the films first, then gone back and read the book? I'd be interested in your impressions.
I would fit that description, which is I think part of the reason I much prefer Emma3 to Emma2. When I was first starting my JA craze, I had heard that there was soon to be a movie version of Emma, and since I didn't want my visual experience to be hampered by knowing what JA *really* wrote (and then saying to myself, "Do what?! That wasn't how it happened in the book!"--which I find myself doing 9 times out of 10 when I read the book first), I did not read the book, even though it was included in the anthology I had. I knew absolutely nothing about Emma when I began watching Emma3, except that she was a matchmaker--I didn't even know her age--for all I knew, she was bored with small-town life because she was married, with no children to liven her up--kind of like S&S's Mrs. Jennings--having married both of her daughters off, she had nothing better to do than to marry off everyone else's.
Emma3 confused me a little bit, because there seemed a lack of proper introduction--e.g. when Mr. Knightley first came in, my brother and I looked at each other and said, "Who's that??" It took me a long time to realize that he was her sister's brother-in-law--partly because the conversation(s) when we are told that was almost background noise--barely noticeable, unless you look for it. Considering his age, I thought that he was a widower, or possibly had a wife like Lady Middleton--just basically there. Therefore, we had an interesting time trying to figure out who went with whom, not realizing for a while that Mr. Knightley was "on the market."
Since I saw the movie first, it obviously colored my impression of the book. When I read the book, I saw all the Emma3 actors, and heard all of their voices. I knew, simply by the length of the book, that there were several things the movie simply had to cut out, so I was prepared for that. I still greatly enjoy Emma3, even though I can see some faults with it--mostly due to the time constraints, which I accept. As regards to JA especially, a good movie adaptation must be, imho, as close to the book as possible, especially using the language of the book. Emma3 did that all the way through (excepting of course the wrapping-up Harvest Supper scene, which is not in the book); as Emma2 did, to a point.
My favorite parts of the book are the ones included in Emma3--how much of that is due to the fact that they were my first exposure is left to much conjecture, because I cannot "un-watch" the movie, and read the book with an unknowledgeable mind. Indeed, while reading the book, I almost wished I had not seen the movie, simply because I wanted to know how soon I would figure out that Mr. Knightley and Emma were going to end up together.
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