Friday, November 5, 2010

Persuasion (1971)

I’m continuing my look at BBC versions of Austen’s novels in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Persuasion is tied with Pride and Prejudice as my favorite Austen novel. I had never seen the 1971 version of this beloved novel and decided now was the time!

The 1971 version is close to four hours long and therefore is able to provide a lot more detail than either the 1995 or 2007 versions. It followed pretty closely to the novel, but did change some scenes around and add some extra items. The production was low budget, but does change locations and have great inside décor. The outside scenes could use some improvement and appeared blurry at times.

Anne Firbank starred as Anne Elliot and Bryan Marshall was Captain Wentworth. I thought
Anne Firbank did an excellent job as Anne Elliot and I also loved her hair. I would rate her above Sally Hawkins from the 2007 version, but below Amanda Root in the 1995 version. Bryan Marshall however I thought was only an okay Captain Wentworth and rates below both Ciaran Hinds from the 1995 version and Rupert Perry-Jones from the 2007 version.

I never really felt the chemistry between the two leads in this version of Persuasion. I also think the length was just too long. There were several rather pointless scenes that were boring and didn’t add to the plot. I previously thought the 2007 version was too long and really hated the sprint at the end. I think the length needs to be somewhere between the 1971 and 2007 versions, perhaps more like the 1995 version.

Overall, this was an okay production of Persuasion and I’m glad I watched it. I still consider the 1995 version the definitive version as to me it had the right amount of time for the story, great chemistry between the leads, and two fantastic actors in those leads.

The 1971 version of Persuasion is my eighth item for the Everything Austen Challenge II.

I obtained this movie from the Kewaunee Public Library system.


  1. Laura, I have not read Persuasion but would love to (someday, someday!). As for the movie versions a nearly four-hour movie best be incredible to hold my attention for so long! Thanks for your honest review.

  2. Alright then--skip this version and go straight to the 1995 version!

  3. Can you believe I've never read Persuasion? I know, my bad! So glad that you have done so many things for Everything Austen II!

  4. That was sure an old version, I will always love the 90s one, the 07 was good, but the ending with the kiss, nah, I like when he comes into the room in the 90s and says he wants to marry her, awww.

    Cool blog :D