Persuasion and Being Kind to Your Past Self

Persuasion and Being Kind to Your Past Self

There is a new movie version of Persuasion coming down the pike soon, from Searchlight and BBC films, featuring Sarah Snook. I am excited! I love Persuasion, as many of us do, and it doesn’t always get as much love as Pride and Prejudice. I was a little surprised to see that the last one was in 2007. Does that feel more than fourteen years away to anyone else? (I think the decade that was 2020 has confused me!)

Anyway, I watched the Amanda Root and Ciarán Hinds version with my daughter recently, and ahh! Ciarán Hinds! He’s my favorite!

But then whenever I watch the later one with Rupert Penry-Jones…he’s my favorite! I really hope they choose a great Captain Wentworth to hold the new movie together.

I think the real factor is that I’m starting to prefer the older actors. [I call this the White Collar test (from the mystery show White Collar, not referring to cravats!) The two male leads were both great actors, and my sisters, while talking about “the cute guy on White Collar” realized much later that they were not at all talking about the same one. My sisters have a lot in common, but they’re twelve years apart! Side note: my White Collar test is not to be confused with my X-Men test, in which I analyze women based on whether they prefer Professor X or Magneto.]

 

But anyway, all that aside, Persuasion is such a wonderful book!  That has been amply covered by others, but today I just want to focus on one facet:

Anne does not blame or judge herself for refusing Captain Wentworth the first time. Yes, she regrets it, and comments how she would never give similar advice to a similar young couple, but she doesn’t engage in any retrospective shaming of her younger self.

I see and hear this coming from friends and family it makes me sad!  Regrets and missed opportunities are inevitable, and sadly, the more life-altering, the more painful they are. But I love how Anne looks back at her younger self with kindness. Without her mother, while very young, with only Lady Russel to guide her, Anne made the choice as best she could.

She also forgives Lady Russel! Wow! (More has been written on that, however, so I’ll leave it.)

During the years after breaking her engagement, Anne, with all her intelligence and good sense, could still have become a melancholy, bitter woman. Instead, the forgiveness she extends to her mentor and to her past self allows her to walk gently into the next sphere of life.

She is a compassionate and patient person, but I don’t think that would have lasted if she had a deep-seated frustration and anger with her young self.

(This, in fact, makes me think unexpectedly of Mr. Rochester, who cannot stop calling himself a fool for his mistake. His situation was worse, having been tricked by his father and brother into a bad marriage, but one can imagine that even a portion of Anne’s forgiveness and kindness would have significantly changed his life. Instead, he runs toward “every vice” as his bitterness grows.)

Anyway, can’t wait for the new Persuasion movie! If anyone has any Persuasion fic recommendations, please let me know. I’m in the mood for more!

That’s all for today, folks!
Corrie

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16 COMMENTS
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Cinnamon
AuAu
February 23, 2021 3:03 AM

Yeah! Do you know if it’s a theater or tv release? Do they even do theater releases anymore?

buturot
February 20, 2021 2:01 AM

Thanks for sharing. defnitely will be waiing for that new movie. I thank you for sharing about Anne and her forgiveness of her younger self. Most enlightening!!!

Chris
Chris
February 18, 2021 6:19 PM

Persuasion is my favorite! I am excited to see how the new movie is done. There have been a few Persuasion variations, but my favorite is Captain Wentworth’s Persuasion by Regina Jeffers. It is so good. I really hope more authors and fan fiction writers will be writing variations and continuations!

Teresa Broderick
Teresa Broderick
February 18, 2021 2:38 PM

A new Persuasion!!! I can’t wait!!! Hadn’t heard anything about it and Persuasion is my favorite Austen.

Riana Everly
AuAu
February 18, 2021 11:04 AM

I am really looking forward to this! It will be hard to top the 1995 movie, which I adore, but I’m willing and eager to be impressed. The cast looks interesting, but other than seeing pics, I don’t know the actors at all.
It’s funny how I’m seeing so much about Persuasion these days. I accidentally fell into writing a modern version a little while ago, and while it is in very early stages still, it’s really got me thinking a lot about the novel and the characters.

Mirta Ines Trupp
AuAu
February 18, 2021 10:28 AM

Great post! I love Persuasion and am looking forward to the new film. Thanks for sharing.

reginajeffers
Admin
February 18, 2021 8:49 AM

I am back again. If one likes a modern Christian-based tale, try “Possibilities” by Debra White Smith. She also has First Impressions (P&P), Central Park (Mansfield Park); Amanda (Emma); Northpointe Chalet (Northanger Abbey) and Reason and Romance (S&S). I enjoyed Possibilities because it is set in the area of the country in which I live. I also enjoyed “Persuading Annie” from Melissa Nathan, who sadly passed in 2007 from breast cancer.

reginajeffers
Admin
February 18, 2021 8:15 AM

I have Captain Frederick Wentworth’s Persuasion, a retelling from his point of view, with a set up for more “adventures” at the end of the tale, Corrie. I also have a variation in the works set in America, very much like my P&P one set in late 1700s/early 1800s, “The Road to Understanding.” The Persuasion story will be entitled Indentured Love.

BTW, did you ever see the film “Starter for 10”? It is set in 1985 at Bristol University and deals with a quiz bowl team (at least, that is the backdrop). It stars James McAvoy, which made me think of it when I spotted your images in the post, but it has several Austen actors in it: Guy Henry from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows fame, but who was also Mr. Collins in “Lost in Austen”; Dominic Cooper from Mamma Mia!, as well as Charles Grey in The Duchess with Keira K., but who was also Willoughby in the 2008 Sense and Sensibility mini-series; and Simon Woods from Dr. Harrison in the Cranford series, who was the adorable Mr. Bingley in P&P 2005. You can also throw in performances by Benedict Cumberbatch and James Corden. Moreover, it was coproduced by Tom Hanks. LOL! I think I am pulling out the DVD and watching it again. It has been too long since I have seen it.

cindie snyder
cindie snyder
February 18, 2021 6:17 AM

Ooh! Sounds good! I haven’t seen. Many Persuasion productions ,can’t wait!

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