Pride and Prejudice and Bridget Jones Comparison

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“It is better to lose your pride with someone you love rather than to lose that someone you love with your useless pride.”

The above quote encapsulates the message that is projected through Jane Austen’s novel, Pride and Prejudice. It provides a detailed portrait of the social conventions of Austen’s time. The issues presented have been transformed to suit a modern audience in Sharon Macguire’s film, Bridget Jones’ Diary. These ideals are similar and include pride, marriage and class/reputation. Macguire alters the situations faced by Austen’s characters and mirrors them in her own personalities. However, due to the different media involved in the presentation of these texts, the techniques used by their composers differ. While Austen uses literary devices Macguire’s film is abundant in film techniques, which are essential to illustrate the meaning of her film.

In Austen’s novel her characterisation of Mr Darcy and Elizabeth highlights the major part that pride plays in their relationship. Darcy prides himself on his social standing and position. To emphasise Darcy’s pride and arrogance Austen utilises dialogue. At the Meryton ball, Darcy states, “She is tolerable; but not handsome enough to tempt me,” Darcy sees Elizabeth as his social inferior and refuses to condescend to dancing with someone “not handsome enough” for him.

Elizabeth’s impression of Darcy lingers until his underlying nobility is gradually revealed. Austen portrays this change in judgment by the metaphor of Pemberley. Its beauty enchants Elizabeth and similarly she will be charmed by the gifts of its owner. The stream, “…of some natural importance was swelled into greater, but without any artificial appearance,” is likened to Darcy who possesses a “natural importance” that is “swelled” by his arrogance, but which coexists with a genuine honesty and lack of “artificial appearance.”

This concept has been transformed from Austen’s novel by camera shots in Macguire’s film. For example,...