Sick Day Period (of the Historical Variety) Dramas

I’m not sure what it is about sick days that always make me crave period historical dramas, preferably British ones.  I’m home sick with a stomach thing today (okay, yesterday, as I am writing this on Monday) and immersing myself in North and South.  Ah, Richard Armitage.  Love him.  My love for this mini-series comes down to this (Spoiler warning):

Best kiss EVAR.  Swoon.  This whole series is like Pride and Prejudice during the Industrial Revolution.  And John is so gruff and rough and unpolished–a made man, and the transition to this point…AGH.  Love.

Of course Jane Austen in any form is always fabulous.  Sense and Sensibility always speaks to me.  I adore Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet.  It’s interesting to me how when I was younger, I so identified with Marianne.  All that tempestuous emotion.  I figure it is a mark of my growing up that I now identify more with Elinor, maybe because I feel more like her now.  I do a lot of taking care of others and have done a lot of putting off of things I want.  So I get a mega swoon out of the fantastic, tempestuous weeping at the end.

And then, naturally, there is Pride and Prejudice.  I didn’t want to like the new version.  I have a deep and abiding love of the BBC mini-series and Jennifer Ehle and Collin Firth.  I could not possibly imagine that they could have done the story justice in two and a half hours.  But I was wrong.  Now I’m not going to say that I prefer it, but I love it on its own merit.  First, the score–Dario Marianelli.  Fabulous.  It’s wonderful and sweeping and emotional.  Second, Jane–the temperament of the woman who plays Jane in the BBC version is perfect, but I can’t say as I ever believed she was a great beauty.  Third, Bingley.  ” I have been the most comprehensive and unmitigated ass.”  He’s just adorable.  Fourth, I feel like the new version actually does a better job of showing that beneath her ridiculousness, Mrs. Bennett’s love for her daughters drives everything.  Fifth, I think Charlotte’s character makes a lot more sense in terms of what drives her in this version.  Her lack of options is much more readily apparent.  Sixth…it’s a lot easier for me to find two and a half hours than it is five.  They took some liberties with the end, of course, but you know how I love those grand dramatic declarations.  They’re so much more satisfying in period dramas.

What are your favorite sick day movies?  Are you into historical dramas or do you like something else?

13 thoughts on “Sick Day Period (of the Historical Variety) Dramas

  1. Yay! I LOVE N&S! and yes, Richard Armitage is absolutely swoonworthy! I never thought there would be another series which I would prefer to P&P and Mr. Darcy, but I do. I love how John Thronton loved Margaret from the beginning and loved her despite everything. And those scenes: the “Look back at Me”, the train station scene, aww.. heartmelting! 🙂

    But the old P&P comes a close second 🙂

    Have you seen the new Jane Eyre with Tovey Stevens? He is the best Mr. Rochester I have ever seen!

    I LOVE period dramas, there shouold be more 🙂

    ps: I’m sick as well with a cold, but have to go to work, so I’m quite grumpy now that I can’t curl up under the duvet watching beautiful BBC adaptations 🙁

  2. I like mindless action flicks, preferably with some fantasy/sci fi in there, like the earlier Transformers or Star Wars film. I didn’t really get on with the latest Transformers, but I loved the earlier ones. “What do you mean, which car? My car! Satan’s Camaro!”

  3. I could watch Sense and Sensibilities over and over! (My husband doesn’t understand this. He can only watch a movie twice.) That scene where Elinor breaks down and cries is my very favorite. It’s one of the best scenes ever in a movie. Of course, I always cry with her. I can’t help it.

  4. ah, total swoon!!! I need a moment 🙂
    You’ve picked my favs. It doesn’t get any better than Jane Austen for me and BBC for P&P is so the way to go. Watching Colin Firth fall for his Elizabeth is something that should be regularly watched!! But yes, the shorter version will do, I do so love the look on Matthew MacFadyen’s face in the above clip.
    Possession is another great sick day movie, also with the awesome Jennifer Ehle (“no mere human can stand in a fire and not be consumed”), which leads me to Emma (with Gwyneth Paltrow, oh and I love Sliding Doors) and Jane Eyre (1996 version- I have not see the version out this year)
    hmmm, I think I’m starting to feel unwell 🙂

  5. Oh goodness. You only picked the one topic I could geek out about for weeks. North & South has completely replaced my love of Pride & Prejudice. I mean to say, the book and movie captured my heart and soul and romanticism, and while I will always collect new print copies of P&P, and will always adore Mr. Darcy, Mr. Thornton works for his livelihood and love. He knows he isn’t the most suave; he speaks his mind and stands by his morals and engages his heroine intellectually within moments of realizing he might be attracted to her. I love North & South because of the political and historical context… yes it’s a romance, but it’s also social commentary on the industrial revolution. P&P is for when I need sparkling wit, N&S is for when I want to believe in equanimity (of multiple levels) in a relationship.

    Other movies I love are the more recent 2007 Sense & Sensibility. I’ve always related to Elinor, even when younger, because I’m the oldest of four and I’m such a worrier. When Mr Farrows finally proposes, Elinor does what she does best when overwhelmed… she starts making something, bread, I think. I loved that little detail that they threw in.

    Anyway, I think I might have to do a mini-marathon this weekend. I’ve been feeling a bit low lately which isn’t good for writing. Need a recharge in my belief in romance.

  6. I love all of this stuff! I am currently hoarding a bazillion Masterpiece Classics and Masterpiece Mysteries on my DVR. Currently, I’m obsessed with Tess of the d’Ubervilles.
    Due to being a mommy, I don’t actually ever get to have a sick day anymore, which blows. My go to movies used to be Sliding Doors, What a Girl Wants (sorry! I can’t help it) and the latest P & P.
    Feel better!

  7. Ah. A topic that makes me weak in the knees. On my sick days, naturally, a Jane Austen movie is my go-to medicine. And the one that just seems to roundhouse kick my germs is Persuasion. Although I do like the 2007 version (, I absolutely LOVE the 1995 version ( I don’t know why. I guess I just find the passion between Anne Elliott and Frederick Wentworth to be more intense.

    **(coughs weakly)** Oh no, I think I’m coming down with a slight cold. Looks like I’m going to have to call in today. Now where is that remote? 😉

    P.S. Oh, and Stacey? Sliding Doors and What a Girl Wants totally rocks. So don’t apologize for liking them. Let’s band together and hold these DVDs high and proud. 🙂

  8. Love, Love, Love Sense and Sensibility. Cast is great, especially Alan Rickman. When I’m sick, I like to watch movies that don’t require a lot of thinking. Transformers, Dazed and Confused, etc. I haven’t seen North and South, but I’ll have to watch it now.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.