Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Now Available on DVD and Blu-ray -- AUSTENLAND, Starring Keri Russell (Review)

Disclosure:  I was sent a review copy from the vendor in order to write up an honest review.  All views shared are mine and mine alone.

"AUSTENLAND, the delightful romantic comedy starring Golden Globe® winner Keri Russell (TV’s “Americans”), arrives on Blu-ray and DVD Feb. 11th from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Based on the novel by New York Times best-selling author Shannon Hale, AUSTENLAND presents a modern twist on the timeless tales of Jane Austen’s romance novels. The imaginative romantic comedy focuses on a woman named Jane (Russell), who is obsessed with the Regency era and the famed author’s fiction. AUSTENLAND premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and the film not only celebrates Austen, but also reminds us of her iconic work in the year (2013) that marks the 200th anniversary of her first publication of “Pride and Prejudice.”

Austen enthusiasts everywhere can explore AUSTENLAND further with the Filmmaker Commentary included on the Blu-ray™ and DVD, featuring Jerusha Hess (co-writer of Napoleon Dynamite) in her directorial debut, as well as producer Stephenie Meyer (Twilight franchise). Also included is a cast Q&A on the making of the film, featuring the ensemble cast, including Keri Russell, JJ Feild (Captain America), Academy Award® winner Bret McKenzie (Best Original Song, The Muppets, 2011), Jennifer Coolidge (American Pie, Legally Blonde), Georgia King (TV’s “The New Normal”), Ricky Whittle (TV’s “Single Ladies”), James Callis (TV’s “Battlestar Galactica”) and two-time Golden Globe® winner Jane Seymour (TV's “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman”).

Directed by Jerusha Hess from a screenplay by Hess and Shannon Hale, based on Hale’s novel.  Produced by Stephenie Meyer, Gina Mingacci and Meghan Hibbett and executive produced by Dan Levinson and Robert Fernandez. 

Jane Hayes’s (Keri Russell) adoration of all things Jane Austen is complicating her love life.  Determined to be the heroine of her own story, Jane spends her life savings on a trip to Austenland, an eccentric resort where guests experience complete immersion in the Regency era.  Armed with her bonnet, corset and needlepoint, Jane strives to avoid spinsterhood … but has a difficult time determining where fantasy ends and real life—and maybe even love—begins.  Jennifer Coolidge (Legally Blonde) and Jane Seymour (Wedding Crashers) also star in this charming romantic comedy.  "

Blu-ray & DVD Special Features include:
  • Commentary with Jerusha Hess and Stephenie Meyer
  • Q&A with the Cast of Austenland – Hear from Russell, Coolidge, Seymour, McKenzie, King, Field, Whittle & Callis about their experiences making the film.

AUSTENLAND’s run time is about 97 minutes. It is rated PG-13 for some suggestive content and innuendo. 


My Thoughts:

I remember watching Keri Russell back in the 90's when she was a Mouseketeer.  Then, when I went off to college, I would gather each week to watch her in the hit television series Felicity.  I was always impressed with her acting and how down to earth she was so.  And, whenever a new film hit theaters with her in it, I had to go see it.  Over the years, I have continued to follow Keri Russell's acting career, and love stumbling upon old episodes of Felicty when they aired on television. Knowing how much I loved this show, my husband surprised me one Christmas with a few of the seasons of Felicity on DVD to watch whenever I wanted.

But, when AUSTENLAND came out last year in limited release, we were tending to two sick toddlers, so by the time I found time to go to see it on the big screen, it was no longer in theaters.  I have been patiently waiting, along with my mom, to see this movie, and was excited when I received a screener copy last week, when it released on DVD and Blu-ray on February 11th.  My parents came down Friday night to visit with the girls and bring them their Valentine's Day gifts.  After dinner, while my daughters, my husband and my dad played upstairs, my mom and I settled in to watch this romantic comedy.

Here is a trailer from the movie, in case you are unfamiliar with this release --

AUSTENLAND is about Keri Russel's character, a single 30-something woman named Jane Hayes.  She is infatuated with all things Jane Austin -- so much so, that she longs for her her own Mr. Darcy, and spends her life savings to take a trip to an English resort catering to Austen-crazed women.  Will she meet her Mr. Darcy, or go home single and lonely?  Don't worry as I will not spoil the ending.  :-)

The movie itself was cute and definitely makes for a great chick flick to watch with your girlfriends.  I know my husband would not sit through it.  Again, Keri Russell was great in her role as a crazed Jane Austen fan.  To think that there are actual people out there that get crazy tattoos, buy lifesize cutouts of characters, and spending their days dreaming of meeting their own Mr. Darcy.  This film does a great job in showing us what these crazed fans would act like if they visited a Jane Austen resort like the one Keri Russells' character did.

My mom and I loved this movie, and it is one I will definitely find myself watching again.  Now to find time to watch the bonus features, which include a Q&A with the cast.  If you are a fan of Jane Austen books or Keri Russell, you will love this movie.

Disclosure:  I was sent a review copy from the vendor in order to write up an honest review.  All views shared are mine and mine alone.

1 comment :

  1. This movie looks really good and one that I would enjoy seeing. I haven't seeen Keri Russell in anything in so long. Thanks for the great review.
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