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The Complete Jane Austen "Persuasion" by Moxie

Masterpiece Classic

From a purely emotional stance, I don't really get why women don't love Persuasion as much as they love Pride and Prejudice. I mean, I love Mr. Darcy as much as the next woman (I even waged a brief campaign to name my second son Fitzwilliam Darcy -----), but it's not as if he's the only romantic hero who ever lived.

Frankly, if we're matching up Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy against Captain Frederick Wentworth, Wentworth comes out ahead. Mr. Darcy is just a rich guy with slightly sub-par social skills, while Wentworth is an actual sea captain. He worked his way up to command his own ship, and led his men in battle on the high seas. He has a field of interest in which he excels, and a career that's both highly specialized and dangerous. That beats Mr. Darcy hands down, because women love a courageous man with skills. (Which is why Tommy Silva and Ming Tsai are sexy, and K-Fed is not.)

And there's certainly not much difference in the dire straits of the heroines. Both Elizabeth Bennett and Anne Elliot are doomed to lives of quiet, wasting boredom if they don't marry, but neither is willing to marry for convenience. The next 30 years stretch out long and bleak in front of each of them.

Anne, though--she's a problem for us. She had a chance with Wentworth, but was persuaded to turn him down. She held perfection in her hand and dropped it like a hot coal! What kind of woman does that? A weak woman. Or a stupid woman. Or a weak and stupid woman.

Elizabeth Bennett has the high road, because Elizabeth is the heroine we've been identifying with for 200 years. She wonders if she's good enough just the way she is. Pick up any modern romance novel, you'll soon see that we're still dealing with that question. Are we too old? Too fat? Are our lips too pouty or not pouty enough? Are we too ambitious or too clever to hold the right man? Of course we love Elizabeth, because she remains exactly the way she is, and still gets her dreamboat. If she can do it, so can we. It makes sense in a society that revolves on the parallel gears of The Secret and the Prosperity Gospel.

Anne's harder to embrace. She found her soul mate, and he wanted to be with her, and she walked away. She walked away from the right man. There's no way we can root for her without violating our own cultural expectations. You only get one chance at happiness. Karma is a bitch. You have to do penance for your sins. What goes around comes around.

If Anne doesn't end up alone, then the world doesn't make any sense.

And yet, Captain Wentworth (played by the dream-inducing Rupert Penry-Jones, who, in a devastating twist of fate appears to be married) reappears after eight years, single, and in want of a wife. He's never married anyone else because no one could compare to Anne.

Call it grace, or redemption, or fantasy, but Anne gets a second chance, and she gets Wentworth. The scene in which she reads his letter and runs frantically through the marketplace to find him came and grabbed me by the throat. You can feel all her emotion cycloning around inside of her as she struggles with convention and her own actions.

How do you deal with regret? And once you finally squash down the demon of regret how can you risk opening up possibility again? It's just too much to process, and it culminates in the mindless prattle of brother-in-law Charles going on about a man in the marketplace, as Anne and Wentworth finally get together. Redemption, pure and simple! I could even forgive the anachronistic kiss on the street in broad daylight.

But then I like being shaken up. I like grace and redemption and second chances. I like thinking that I could be loved for myself, but that I could also be forgiven my stupidity and weakness. And that's why I sobbed through the second half of Persuasion.

Comments

Women go for Mr. Darcy because he needs the most tidying. He's shy, he's haughty, he's stand-offish and, horror of all horrors, refuses to dance. It would probably take half of your life trying to get him to change his ways and as we all know, women sometimes think wrongly that if a man can not be changed to suit their needs then he is probably not worth having.

Stella Gibbon's Flora Post would say that Frederick Wentworth, to paraphrase, "Seems tidy already." Frederick is self-reliant and self-made, and, quite frankly, far more intimidating with his war-hero status and high-degree of competency, coupled with his reliable and intelligent friends. Darcy only has Mr. Bingley, whose only recommendation seems to be that he likes to dance, doesn't read, and has the tendency to rapidly fall in love.

So, as you see, I quite agree with you about Darcy vs Wentworth, but beg to differ (slightly) on the subject of Elizabeth Bennet vs Anne Elliot.

Anne has all of my compassion. I don't find her weak or stupid; I find her remarkable and strong. You try to keep from sinking into tears and wretchedness while watching the man you have loved for eight long years flirting with another while you are reduced to playing the pianoforte for them while they dance a reel. Now tell me that that is not a strong woman.

And, you must remember, Anne comes from quite a different background then that of Elizabeth Bennet. Anne, though of higher rank (daughter of a Baronet) has not had the advantage of a caring word from a loving and devoted mother at that delicate moment of her life (she was only 19 when she refused Wentworth). After her mother's passing, Anne has only had a neglectful father and two self-absorbed sisters to depend upon, along with a godmother who can only ever give horrible advice.

Elizabeth, on the other hand, has been, for the most part, surrounded by love and attention all of her life. She's her father's favorite daughter and has a completely devoted sister in Jane. No wonder she can stand on her own two feet; she has such a strong support system to fall back on when she eventually makes her mistakes. We are naturally attracted to Elizabeth as the wonderful heroine that she is simply because she has the personality and characteristics we all wish we had.

Perhaps boredom does loom for an unmarried Anne, but in Elizabeth's case, I think we can safely say that she would come out of an unmarried state as having a much more fulfilled life.

But, thank God that they both married and lived happily ever after. But it does make one wonder, what if the ladies could somehow switch the gentleman that they settled down with. They do seem to suit; Elizabeth with Wentworth--Anne with Darcy? Hmmm? Now that would make for a very interesting and thought-provoking ending.

I agree with Teresa about Anne v/ Elizabeth. Persuasion is my favorite Austen novel, and although Elizabeth was smart and spirited and great fun, I empathized with Anne. I don't think she was weak or stupid at all; her reasons the first time around had a lot to do with principle and respect and having the guts to do what duty rather than her heart bade her. It also had a lot to do with her own self-awareness - she was very young and was willing to trust in those whom she loved. I think that's why there is an eight year lapse - the cricumstances the second time around are almost identical (in terms of family pressures), but the fundamental shift has been in Anne herself (she knows herself now), and that why her decision is completely different then.

Oh, and Wentworth v. Darcy? No contest. Wentworth, all the way. Much more perceptive (didn't need an aunt meddling in order to face facts), much more open and emotionally generous. Darcy is pretty decent, but Wentworth is dreamy.

I agree with a lot that has been said. I am a huge P&P fan, but persuasion has always been a close second, I ran into this website looking for a review of the new Masterpiece Theatre adaptation, am I the only one who felt like it was a sprint? I didn't really feel like I was able to absorb all the emotion, It just all went by to fast.

Modern audiences have gotten used to 'spunky' heroines who are determined to do what they think is best regardless of the pressure put on them to do otherwise. Anne isn't fiesty and fearless, and that is unpopular. Persuasion is the story of a woman coming into herself and learning to trust her own judgement. Persuasion is truer to life than Pride and Prejudice.

I agree with your assessment of the story, but we differ when it comes to this new Masterpiece adaptation, which was rushed and heavy-handed with a subtle story. Worse, instead of appearing strained but composed in the face of regret, Anne seemed blank or even drugged half the time.

All the little moments that make up the story pass in a blur of shaky camera work, and then Anne runs ridiculously through the streets to share the most unappealing kiss possible. The closing moments weren't romantic, they were a perfect example of how Persuasion was mangled throughout the hectic hour and a half on Masterpiece.

Based on the movie alone, I wouldn't believe there was anything in Pursuasion to measure up next to Pride and Prejudice. The San Fransisco Chronicle offers a review that pinpoints why this adaptation just doesn't do justice to a lovely story.

I enjoyed the Darcy v. Wentworth analysis, and I've always loved Persuasion (and Captain Wentworth) at least as much at P&P. I have to agree with the criticism of this adaptation, however. I kind of liked the hand-held camera work (but then I'm weird that way), but on the whole it felt like "Persuasion on Speed." What on earth was the hurry? The 1995 film version was better in almost every aspect.

Reading your coments, Miss Moxie, told me you have not read the book. While this movie version pushes hard to persuade us that Anne turned the Captain down lightly the first time and hints that she was persuaded to turn down another suitor because he was not bookish enough, the reality (well, fictional reality anyway)was that she was not of age at 19, and could not have married without her father's approval. Lady Russell, on whom both Sir Walter and Anne depend, was, if unfeeling, at least steady in her view that they were too young and too poor at that time to marry. Even Wentworth seems to agree, with his comments at the dinner party, that then was not right (although now certainy is.) And we readers know that Anne did not marry Charles Musgrove because she did not love him. But since the feelings of Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth were true, and enduring, they did end up together; there is more than one chance for happiness. Particularly if you are good.

If I had to put my finger on it, I'd say that the main difference is that Elizabeth is in the moment of making her socially unpopular decisions (declining two marriage proposals etc.). It's easy to say, yes! you go girl! Don't marry the unctuous Mr. Collins! Don't accept that backhanded un-compliment of a proposal from Mr. Darcy! In Pride and Prejudice, the specter of what awaits her as an unmarried woman of no particular wealth or position is indistinct.

However, with Anne, the whole story is set in that ghostland of nearly-old-maid-ish, and it's all too clear what her life will be like. She's "lucky" to have relations with some money, and thus is bounced around from household to household on whims and illnesses and accidents. She has to bend to everyone else's convenience and desires. She has no place to call her own, no one to back her up. And, if she were to stand up for herself, it's clear she would likely land in a situation similar to her friend in Bath.

It's much more difficult to understand her decision, 8 years after it's been made, knowing what a sorrow it's been for her.

I find it to be a beautiful story, though. I love the idea that a 2nd chance might happen, even 8 years down the road.

I came here also looking for a discussion about the latest Masterpiece Theater adaptation of Persuasion. I too was thrown by the fast pace of the film, but I enjoyed the pretty eye candy of Rupert Penry-Jones (although I never thought of Wentworth as a blond) and the funny line readings by Anthony Head. But I was heartbroken that the film cut out my favorite scene, when Wentworth, overcome by his feelings, scribbles a letter to Anne in her presence, then bids her to read it with a meaningful look, she reads it and is overcome, but trapped with the Musgroves when she wants to run to find Captain Wentworth. I love that scene! And the film completely turned it on it's head and having Anne run around breathlessly all over town. They didn't even show Wentworth writing the letter!

As to Anne's weakness of character in refusing Wentworth, I went back and read the second to last chapter (because I missed its full inclusion in the film) and Anne stands up for herself (Elizabeth Bennet style) by telling Wentworth she was somewhat right to listen to the advice of her guardians, as it was her family duty. And Wentworth comes back with a "I don't know, I still can't quite forgive them, but maybe I should have written to you a year later after I'd made enough money for us to live on..." I liked that exchange. It showed strength and humility and maturity in both characters.

I have to say I was terribly dissappointed with this production of Persuasion. The great thing about Austen or should I say one of the many great things about Austen is that she knows how to unfold a story. This production sort of trampled all over that idea with its shorthand dialogue and Anne breathlessly running around.

Not only was the production rushed but it did the character of Anne a disservice. In the book, Austen provides the history of Anne's devastating refusal of Wentworth and there is an emotional context for both her decision and its aftermath. Anne, in the book comes across as a woman torn by responsibility ( to the memory of her prudent mother, to Lady Russell, to her unworthy father and sister and to Kellynch itself) and her own possibility of happiness with the young and somewhat unsuitable Wentworth. When in the end, Wentworth returns and gradually sees that Anne is the same gentle, intelligent, kind, insightful girl grown even more mature - he cannot help but love her again. What could be better?

Hopefully, there will be yet another screen version of Persuasion which will satisfy those of us who love Anne Eliot's story.

As an old English major I dreaded having to read Austen. But I was delightfully surprised when I read such remarkable writing. I had not read Persuasion, but confess I fell in love with Anne Elliot. If the good Captain didn't act, I would have jumped through the television to spirit her away.

Anne's unselfishness, strength, intelligence, and, yes, beauty, made me run out to buy the novel today.

The film may have been short, and deficient in some areas, but if it inspires more people to read Austen, then bravo.

wentworth hands down...not that darcy isn't a great guy...IN THE END.
anne vs. elizabeth.
well honestly I relate to elizabeth more than anne...(save their choices in men) but you ca't really attack anne. She wasn't a stupid. she was a young, easily "persuaded" nineteen year old girl. she is the outcast in her family and by listening to cautions about marrying wentworth she simply shows a want to be accepted into her family. now elizabeth probably would have said forget the family I love wentworth and I'm marryign him no matter what...but we're all different now aren't we? I loved the movie...full of suspense toward the end.
oh...and don't ever name a poor defenseless child fitzwilliam....poor mr. darcy! tehe

I agree with many of the comments so far posted. I was so disappointed with how much of the plot had to be abandoned in order to fit the ninety minute time frame, that I stayed up the rest of the night re reading this favourite of mine so I could reconnect with its power. Yes, that final scene bothered me, as it was not period appropriate and focussed on the running Anne [ the equivalent to the required car chase scene in action movies? ], and, as in many recent Austen adaptations, social mores are abandoned as lovers carry on wildly in public. Yes, the book gives Anne the final word on her "persuasion".

I thought the actors did a great job, within the confines of their shortened roles. It was hard at first, getting used to Rupert P.J., after watching him in the "Spooks" series.

Yes, I have to admit, the 1995 film was much more satisfying. It was that film that drew to me to read the book, previously neglected by a keen Austen fan.

The diary scenes were a meaningful addition to this adaptation. They shared with the viewer the incredible inward struggle that Anne felt during her first meetings with Capt. Wentworth. These thoughts and feelings are valuable to truly understand how deep their love once was and how hopeless it appears now. Due to the general nature of film, most Austen adaptations cannot help but lack the insight into the characters' thoughts, wit, and internal struggles that her text bestows. Yet, it is this insight that endears readers to her books. No matter how deficient the movie was, those few scenes made it somewhat better.

Gee, I know they have to abridge to keep each novel in one episode but I was really disappointed in Persuasion last night. I will, as all Austen-ites will, watch all the upcoming episodes, but cutting scenes like Wentworth writing his note to Anne, in favor of what seems an unlikely marathon through Bath followed by a strangely prolonged and gaspingly unattractive kiss, well, just seemed wrong. As well as the drawn out and trite end in front of Anne's "wedding present". But it is still heavenly to spend Sunday night with Jane and a PBS audience that I know shares my passion for her work.

I,too, was dismayed at the changes and liberties taken with this lovely story.
I really like the older version so much better as it showed the struggle with the characters so much more intensely. The newer ending left me so shocked....Anne running down the street like a common street person. I believe she would have never ran like that. She was a daughter of a baronet...things like that just were not done.
One sweet and tender kiss with the Capt. and Anne in the older version had such charm and it was believable.
This newer version.....sadly missed the mark and Jane A. probably would have been very unhappy with this version too!

I love the adaptation of jane austen
persuasion but i have to say that i was devastated when my favorite part was
left out on the adaptation when captain
wenworth overcome by his emotion wrote a letter to anne in her presence. this was the best part of the book.i am big fan of jane austen, i have a collection of
her books and dvd. and this one will be added to my collection.

jessica newman

Before last night I had not read PERSUASION or seen any movie of it. Even without any other version with which to compare it, I felt rushed through it. I also was dismayed by the musical score, which reminded me unhappily of the piano background played on MR. ROGERS' NEIGHBORHOOD when they switch to the world of make-believe. After being spoiled by the haunting and beautiful music in the Ang Lee version of SENSE AND SENSIBILITY, I found this score abysmal. Also, I thought Anne came across as a personality unlikely to inspire undying devotion. She seemed always so tense, so lacking in the little "hooks" upon which one is likely to be caught, in an intriguing personality. (I kept thinking that the director forbade her such facial expressions as might have been appealing.) And, yes, that immodest public dashing about, and the kiss, were jarring. One of the things I find moving in stories from this period, is the prohibition of passionate displays, and the sexual tension that results from the repression of it.

After all that, I still have to say that I was somewhat entertained; I'm inspired to read the book (even in the tiny print of my anthology) and, of course, I'll be watching the other five.

I enjoyed Persuasion and the fine acting. I have not read this story nor seen the 1995 adaptation, so I will only say that I was very dissapointed that the mores of the period were not followed. The running and the kiss were inapropriate. The "wedding gift" scene seemed contrived.

These are such wonderful comments from Jane Austen fans. I filled in the parts the adaptation left out. The story is so uplifting that it brings comfort to your heart even if it could have been better. I think Miss Austen was kind enough to accept the constraints of Masterpiece Theatre had she been asked. I loved that Anne was not particularly beautiful, but so centered and fun that Wentworth simply could not forget her. Being without a mother made Anne rely on Lady Russell's guidance, understandably so. It was a pity, but all's well that ends well. It is telling that so many of Austen's heroines are trapped in families that neglect them.

I LOVED this version of Persuasion...all of it...until the end. In the book the scene where Captain Wentworth overhears Anne talking about women loving longest when all hope is gone....and the Captain writing the letter and leaving it on the table...then communicating to her with a glance that she is to read it....OHhhhhhh that was the best part and should not have been tampered with. That point aside....I did love the actors and thought this version was great. I loved the journal entries and how Anne would look up to the camera an have a grim look on her face....until the last journal entry and she smiles! Great, great touch. And I think that she was supposed to seem as if she was just going through the movements of life without her heart in it....she was heartbroken after having to turn down her true love's marriage offer. Great acting and by far the BEST thing on TV on Sunday night!!

"Persuasion" is one of my favorites, also. However, this latest version disappoints greatly. In an eagerness to "revamp," attention of both writing and directing was toward the "story" and not of the richness of the characters themselves, leaving their portrayal very two-dimentional and very "cardboardy." Any story is only a "retold" plot; the characters create the uniqueness. Next time, don't "mess" with the "master."

This adaptation was embarrassing. I felt like I was watching a harlequin romance. The background music was cheesy and the performances lacked subtlety. I was surprised that Wentworth didn't trip on Anne's tongue, which hung out all the way to the floor when he was around.

This adaptation was embarrassing. I felt like I was watching a harlequin romance. The background music was cheesy and the performances lacked subtlety. I was surprised that Wentworth didn't trip on Anne's tongue, which hung out all the way to the floor when he was around.

I enjoy this adaption version of Persuasion as well as the prior version. Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion rank as my favorites of all Jane Austen's novels. The characters of Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth are just as endearing as the characters of Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy. As you get older, you get to appreciate Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth more because their characters showed a maturity of strength and character which they had to go through eight years of separation. Wonder if Mr. Darcy would remain steadfast in his feelings or last that long if he had to wait for 8 years and not get to see Elizabeth at all during that 8 years?

PSB has been promoting the Jane Austen series for weeks, leading viewers to expect a wonderful home-cooked dinner of a series. Instead, they served up Kraft macaroni and cheese on a paper plate! This pathetic version of Persuasion was concocted from the novel's plot points, BUT you don't read Jane Austen for the bare plot. You read Austen to watch the characters' thoughts and actions as their relationships gradually develop and change over time. You read Austen to savor her wit and humor as she details the lives of both the secondary and the primary characters. This version of Persuasion provided no explanation for any of the secondary characters' actions (e.g., Why did the two Musgrove daughters change their minds about which men to marry? What caused Wentworth to write his letter to Anne? How did Anne's father react to her reconciliation with Wentworth?) The final scenes (running through the streets, getting her house back) reminded me of the infamous hot-tub/happy ending scenes in Demi Moore's Scarlet Letter. At least that film began with the honest statement that it was "freely adapted from the novel." If any of the remaining Austen programs are of the same "freely-adapted" 90-minute variety as Persuasion, I'll give them a wide berth!

Thanks for all the excellent comments!

Miss Anne, of *course* I've read Persuasion. Several times, in fact.

What I got from the book is that Anne cut off Wentworth completely after being persuaded by Lady Russell and her father. There was that whole long diatribe by Mrs. Musgrove about long engagements, so we know that Anne and Wentworth could have continued their arrangement until she was old enough and he'd made his fortune. But instead she cut him off completely.

I don't see how two hours on Persuasion could ever live up to the novel. Maybe because I'd read the book I filled in all the character and emotion and that's why it made me cry? I also missed the letter-writing scene, but still found myself sobbing like a baby at the end.

I was not familiar with Persuasion prior to seeing it Sunday night. The whole time I watched it I thought why was this man so enamored by Anne? I knew this version must of omitted vital aspects of Anne that Jane Austen would have completely developed in the novel. Many of your comments helped my understanding of Anne and Wentworth. The comparisons of Anne and Lizzie are interesting. When I watch these stories, I always wonder how I would have behaved in those highly judgemental, socially constrained times. I always thought myself like Lizzie; a strong personality that speaks her mind, but placed in Anne's position, would I at 19 have followed the direction of family and friends despite my own personal strength? I think it highly likely I would have. I wonder how many women of strong convictions back then were persuaded into submission all in the name of societal correctness.

I liked the beginning to middle parts of the movie, but it seemed that the film makers ran out of money towards the end that they made so many short-cuts towards Anne & Wentworth getting back together again (Mrs. Smith running out to tell Anne about Mr. Elliot & Mrs. Clay was ridiculous and making the KISS too long was preposterous). Had they added about 30 more minutes (the film was only about 90 minutes long), they would have made a more faithful ending to the original book version. The NY & Philadelphia PBS channels that evening both had transmission and signal problems that evening; I did not catch some of the scenes.

I enjoyed the "Persuasion" adaptation overall. However, the story's pace was not even - the beginning third was slow and the last third rushed. What seemed strange was that Cousin William Elliot was far more charismatic and kind than Capt. Wentworth (who seemed far too young and unweathered to have survived several years of being at sea, at war, on sailing ships in horrendous conditions), and Anne was animated and smiling only in William Elliot's presence. In THIS adaptation, Elliot was far kinder to Anne than Wentworth ever was, except at the end, so Anne's choice seems odd. Also, the rushed revelation by Mrs. Smith of Cousin Elliot's "perfidy" was given no basis beforehand in the characterization and lines given to Elliot to speak, or in the plot line. It seems that Anne was too easily "persuaded" of Mr. Elliott's totally inexplicable change in behavior (which kind of vitiates the point of the story about Anne's maturation). And why did the PBS presentation delete William Elliot's mysterious first entrance (you can see it on YouTube) when he strides across the seawall at Lyme, so that the audience (and Wentworth) can see that another man is immediately drawn to Anne?

I have a question. Aren't the estate and Kellynch Hall entailed on William Elliot? How, then, does Wentworth buy the Hall for Anne as a wedding present? As I understand it, back then, it was almost impossible to break an entail.

I love Persuasion. It is my favorite Austen novel and, therefore, my favorite novel.

I admire Anne Elliot greatly. She is a very strong woman who, like Elinor Dashwood, doesn't let others see how deeply emotional she really is. I want to be like her when I grow up. Considering I'm already middle-aged, I guess that's just not going to happen.

But I digress. I've seen this movie 3 times: once last spring via "interesting means" and twice via PBS. The 7 minutes of cuts PBS made to fit in Gillian Anderson's insipid introduction, PBS' traditional self-congratulations and the commercials that PBS still tries to tell us they don't have made the film even harder to follow than it was when I saw it in the full, unedited version. I actually didn't hate it the first time I saw it (the UK version) but the two times I saw the PBS version have disappointed me greatly.

The Bath Marathon was just plain stupid. Having Mrs. Smith run around town in search of Anne is also stupid. I resented the scene where Wentworth plops Anne on the back of the Crofts' gig like a sack of potatoes. The kiss was cringe-inducing. And moving the "constancy" discussion from Bath to Lyme and having it take place between Anne and Benwick instead of Anne and Harville is inexcusable. There's a REASON Wentworth's letter says "I can listen no longer in silence..." It's because he overhears the conversation. No conversation overheard, no need for the most beautiful love letter in all of English literature. To quote George Knightley, "Badly done."

I popped in my DVD of 1995 version to get this travesty out of my brain. The scene where Anne grabs the chair back as if for dear life is nothing if not subtle, and it is a prime example of why this adaptation remains my favorite of all Austen films.

I was so glad to find this review and had to respond.

I was so very disappointed in this version of Austen's Persuasion that I called my friend and ranted.

While I understand the writers had to fit the book into a 90 minute program, they practically re-wrote the story. And to have Anne running around looking for Frederick? I'm surprised she didn't get a stitch in her side.

The actors did the best they could with what they were presented with.

I need to get the Ciaran Hind's/Amanda Root version and watch it.

This latest Persuasion was an insult.

Persuasion is my favorite book by Jane Austen and this adaptation was so disappointing. I don't think I can bring myself to watch the rest of the "Complete" Jane Austen. The screenwriter didn't do this book justice.

I have seen all three versions of "PERSUASION". Although I find both the 1995 and 2007 versions flawed, I love them both equally. The reason I love them both is the way the leads in both movies managed to create this tense, yet passionate chemistry between them.

As for the 1971 version, the chemistry between the two leads is not that obvious . . . at least in the first half of the miniseries. But I still liked it.

Not one of the versions is completely faithful to the novel. But then I never expected them to be.

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