Pride and Prejudice (1995) Episode 5

Pride and Prejudice

Film Adaptation – 1995

Episode 5

 

Directed by Simon Langton.

 

Lydia runs away with Wickham. Elizabeth returns home while her uncle joins Mr. Bennet in London to search for the youngest daughter.

To fill out the 50 odd minutes, this episode was packed with scenes of Wickham and Lydia in London during their elopement, and of Darcy searching for them. These were wedged in between scenes of Longbourn and of Mrs. Bennet in hysterics. I find it an interesting take on the whole situation, even if it is a bit unnecessary. All the action is happening through letters, some of which are real aloud.

There are only two people to blame for Lydia’s conduct, and that is Mr. Bennett, and her mother. Lydia is too silly and young to fully understand the severity of her actions. However, I think that her parents should have taken the pains to ensure she didn’t expose herself. They should have checked her behaviour.

How could they though? When Mrs. Bennett is as silly as her youngest daughter, and Mr. Bennet enjoys laughing at their follies too much to stop them. It is this impropriety that Darcy speaks of, and it is this sort of behaviour that makes me cringe again. At least in this episode, in this case, Mr. Bennet admits his own fault in the whole business.

Mrs. Bennet as usual is pointing fingers and blaming everyone for everything. I find her wailing and whining unnecessary; she could have just been complaining. As to her crying, I never saw the mother shed a tear even though she was upset. Again, I feel that Mrs. Bennet, like Mr. Collins in the previous episode, is over-acted and simply over the top.

I feel that the entire episode has slipped away without changing anything. Other than Lydia finally being found in London and Mr. Bennet arranging some terms for Wickham and Lydia’s marriage, I think a lot of this episode could have been skimmed over from Episode 4, right up to the last 10 minutes of Episode 5.

It amazes me how so much time has been wasted focusing on all the wrong things. The key elements are left out, and what’s left in the narrative is this loose mess that feels out of place. At this point I’ve completely lost hope. I have no idea how the last episode is going to redeem the series and make me like it.

The concluding episode follows.

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