I went and saw the film The Jane Austen Book Club the other day. It's not a very good or a very interesting film, but it's different from all the other not very good or interesting films out, and that's the most you can hope for nowadays.
As the title suggests, the plot is about a group of people who get together to read Jane Austen. That's pretty much it, apart from the usual litany of couplings and uncouplings that you get in this sort of romantic comedy: Allegra who breaks up with one girlfriend and gets together with another; Prudi, who is thinking of having an affair with one of her students, but doesn't; Sylvia, whose husband breaks up with her, and then gets back together with her; and Jocelyn, whose deep moral insight by the end of the film consists in her learning that people are just as important as dogs.
The film has layers, but you could say the same thing about the styrofoam cake in the window of my local cake shop.
Occasionally, while all this sort-of plot is going on, ambient not-quite music wafts around in the background like a soundtrack that has escaped from a Woody Allen movie and doesn't know what to do with itself. The characters read tracts out of Jane Austen and exclaim in an enlightened fashion about how it relates to their life, and, zombie-like, develop an insatiable urge to bring in other friends into the club.
If sado-masochists enjoy non-spanking sex, then I enjoyed this film. Two non-committal stars out of five.
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