Pride and Prejudice: A Visit in Film History


Elizabeth, having rather expected to affront him, was amazed at his gallantry; but there was a mixture of sweetness and archness in her manner which made it difficult for her to affront anybody; and Darcy had never been so bewitched by any woman as he was by her. He really believed, that were it not for the inferiority of her connections, he should be in some danger.

I was thinking about writing a post on the first time I saw the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice. But as much as I loved it, it didn’t have the impact like when I actually saw P&P on the screen for the very first time. It was the 1940 version with Greer Garson and Lawrence Olivier. Mmmmm, Lawrence Olivier.

And yes, I know. To Austen purists, it is fraught with holes and odd interpretations. I noticed that the last time I watched. But the essence of the story is there. To those who have not watched it, I included a few stills to show the lovely sets and costumes.


The family. Like many other versions, the mom is hilarious. Ringlets are a popular hairstyle for them, although you can see the forties style given to Elizabeth. Jane is played by Maureen O’Sullivan.


At the dance, when Elizabeth overhears some very uncharming things about herself. Yes, the location makes one wonder why the Bennet family is in any way concerned about money, but, what the hey. The style costumes that the men are wearing are probably (not 100% sure) more authentic for the time period.


Elizabeth, Jane, and Kitty. Kitty is played by Heather Angel.  She is really funny in this adaptation. The scene where she plays the piano and sings is priceless.


Elizabeth and Lady Catherine de Bourgh played by Edna May Oliver. Check out that hat!


Sigh, true love. The sets are so lovely. The roses in the background are just beautiful as are these two. This is what happily ever after looked like to me when I was young.

I love watching all the versions of P&P, depending on what mood I am in. I had lots of fun looking up all these stills and remembering how enchanted I was as a little girl when I first saw this wonderful. Little was I to know what a lasting positive impact it made to my life, and the literature I was inspired to read and enjoy.

3 Responses

  1. With most book adaptions I am usually disappointed…but Austens work translates well and I truly enjoy watching her novels in film….they stand alone…

  2. Thanks for sharing these stills! This movie adaptation was my first P&P experience waaay back when and I haven’t seen it in ages. I loved it!

  3. Love the pictures! Lady Catherine’s hat is astoundingly huge! How did that come through any doorway? Also your comments with the pictures had me giggling.

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