In early 19th century England, true love and money often pull in opposite directions but a good match in marriage is everything. So, pity Mr and Mrs Bennett (Brenda Blethyn and Donald Sutherland) who have five daughters!
The radiant Elizabeth (Keira Knightley) is one of them and she likes to say exactly what she feels. She’s not very impressed with the sour-faced Mr Darcy (Matthew Macfadyen). Smiling Mr Whickham (Rupert Friend) is much more charming, but first appearances can be deceptive. Knightley comes of age as an actress with her exceptional performance here. Appearing in almost every scene, she’s the vivacious heart and soul of the tale and is faultless throughout.
The photography and staging of the drama couldn’t be more eloquent, especially in the elaborate ballroom scenes, but the movie never falls into the trap of looking like a stuffy museum piece. This is an old favourite refined, revived and reinvigorated with real feeling and flair.