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Video Reviews

MPAA Rating
Drama, Romance
Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, Alan Rickman, Hugh Grant, Gemma Jones
Ang Lee
Bob Smithouser
Sense and Sensibility

Sense and Sensibility

Searching for a wholesome summer video? Look no further than the charmingly romantic drama Sense and Sensibility. With the help of an Oscar-winning screenplay by Emma Thompson (who also stars), Jane Austen's nineteenth century novel is brought to life as a refreshing tribute to a more innocent age of ladies and gentlemen.

A vibrant character study, Sense and Sensibility is rich in personality and depth of relationship as it follows the story of the Dashwoods. The film begins when the family patriarch dies and his son, John, and greedy daughter-in-law inherit his vast estate. Left to fend for themselves are John's step-mother and her three daughters, who are forced to live in a small cottage offered by a kind, yet boorish cousin and his gossipy, match-making mother-in-law.

The endearing Dashwood women struggle with the constraints placed on them by their loss of wealth and social status. Moreover, when the two eldest fall in love with eligible bachelors, their widely different approaches to matters of the heart provide delicious food for thought. The hopelessly romantic middle child, Marianne, is a funloving free spirit. Her older sister, Elinor, is more reserved, proper and analytical.

Adults will be pleased to see a balance of passion and purity. There's no sex (not even a kiss), just a tender story of love and devotion. Virtues lending themselves to family discussion include loyalty, kindness, self respect, honesty, modesty in courtship, the riches of good character over an ample dowry and resisting the temptation to engage in reckless romanticism.

Sense and Sensibility is an uplifting story with a witty spirit of justice. It is wonderfully crafted entertainment appropriate for all ages, though it may not hold the attention of very young children.