Skip to main content

Check out this great romantic drama before it leaves Netflix next week

In spite of the many wonderful movie adaptations that have come out of her work, Jane Austen is still viewed, at least in certain circles, as old-fashioned or boring in the same way that many authors from the 19th century are. If you ever find yourself harboring the delusion that Austen’s work isn’t interesting, though, all you really need to do is watch Joe Wright’s 2005 adaptation of Pride & Prejudice.

Even though it’s a faithful adaptation of its source material, the movie springs to life almost immediately and uses the conventions of its story to its advantage. Unfortunately, if you want to check the movie out on Netflix, you only have until the end of October. Here are three reasons you should take the time to do exactly that.

The material never feels dull or uninteresting

Pride & Prejudice (2005) Official Trailer

In spite of its setting (a series of English estates) and its subject matter (a love story between two people who are incapable of expressing their feelings to one another) Wright’s Pride & Prejudice always feels filled with life.

The central romance, between a young woman discovering the world and a man who tries his best to protect his friends, is a comedy of errors and missed connection, but what makes the movie work is the way you feel yourself swooning right alongside the main characters as they slowly move toward one another.

Pride & Prejudice understands how to make the most of its sexual tension

Matthew McFadyen and Kiera Knightley in 'Pride & Prejudice.'
Universal Pictures

There are plenty of moving pieces to the story of Pride & Prejudice, but at the heart of it is the budding relationship between Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy. As played by Atonement‘s Kiera Knightley and Succession‘s Matthew Macfadyen, respectively, this relationship is almost completely about scintillating possibility.

There’s one moment, early on in the film, when Darcy touches Elizabeth’s hand to help her into a carriage, and then flexes and clenches it, as if he’s trying to shake the feeling of her off of him. It’s a moment that perfectly illustrates how masterfully Wright is able to showcase the chemistry between these two characters, even as their relationship remains remarkably chaste.

It’s the opposite of stuffy

The cast of 'Pride & Prejudice.'
Universal Pictures

If you haven’t already been convinced that a period drama might be worth your time, perhaps the best thing about Pride & Prejudice, and about all Austen adaptations when they’re well done, is that they are not at all stuffy or overly mannered in the way you might expect a period piece to be. Instead, this movie is brimming with life, quirk, and humor.

Macfadyen’s Darcy may be a bit of a stick in the mud, but Elizabeth’s entire family is filled with totally unique, distinct characters who all seem like real people. They may have lived in a time when manners meant everything, but that doesn’t mean these people don’t have real souls.

Pride & Prejudice is streaming on Netflix until November 1.

Editors' Recommendations

Joe Allen
Joe Allen is a freelance writer based in upstate New York focused on movies and TV.
3 Edgar Allan Poe horror movies to watch after Netflix’s Fall of the House of Usher
A man in red with a red face in The Masque of the Red Death.

Edgar Allan Poe is one of the creepiest, darkest authors in history, and in some ways, he invented the genre we now know as horror. In spite of his enormous influence, though, there have been fewer Poe adaptations than you might think.

With the arrival of Mike Flannagan's The Fall of the House of Usher on Netflix, we're getting one of the splashiest adaptations of a Poe work we've ever seen. Even so, this new series isn't the first time that Poe has been adapted. Here are three of the best movies based on the horror author's legendary work.
The Masque of the Red Death (1964)
The Masque of the Red Death - Vincent Price (1964) - Official Trailer

Read more
This 2017 Tom Cruise thriller is the most popular movie on Netflix. Here’s why you should watch it
Tom Cruise pointing at a plane in American Made.

As an aging movie star who is driven to entertain his audience, Tom Cruise has committed himself to more and more daring stunts with each movie he puts out. In each of these movies, Cruise seems to be playing a version of himself, a harried man who is also confident that he's the only one who can keep it all going.

There was a time, though, when Cruise was willing to deliver much more full-bodied performances in everything from Born on the Fourth of July to Magnolia. Even more recently, though, Cruise has found vehicles that allow him to give a more complete performance, and one of those movies is now trending on Netflix. American Made was released in 2017, and its success on Netflix is suggestive of what the movie does well. Here are three reasons you should check it out:
It's a grounded crime thriller

Read more
3 rom-coms on Netflix you need to watch in October
Two people look at each other in Love at First Sight.

Romantic comedies are feel-good movies. They provide the audience with a feeling of love and satisfaction as a romantic relationship develops onscreen. Rom-coms are the perfect escapist movies because they are usually set in beautiful locations, transporting the audience into a world they want to experience.

Some of the best romantic comedies are on Netflix right now. For October, we chose three rom-coms you need to watch, including a mathematical love story, a budding relationship in the skies, and a film starring the queen of rom-coms, Julia Roberts.
Love at First Sight (2023)

Read more