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YMMV / The Jane Austen Book Club

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  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Prudie could be seen as a drama queen who loves playing the victim at the beginning of the film. Notably she grumbles and complains about her husband to a crowd of complete strangers - but does not confront the man himself about his attitude. Dean could be seen as Innocently Insensitive cancelling a trip to France for a baseball game, since Prudie doesn't seem to give him any indication of her feelings at first.
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  • Broken Base: The subplot between Prudie and Trey - essentially she nearly has an affair with her student. Some viewers refuse to forgive it, citing the Double Standard that the teacher would never have been played sympathetically if the genders were reversed. Others note that it's a Setting Update of Mansfield Park - and that Trey is an Expy of Henry Crawford. So he needs to be something that's very tempting (a hot teenage boy) but with enormous stakes if Prudie gives in.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Prudie is the favourite of the protagonists, mostly because she's quite The Woobie throughout the story and the fact she's played by a much beloved actress like Emily Blunt.
    • Grigg is also loved for being an Adorkable sci-fi geek.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Sky's sudden death in a car accident has become sadder as of Lynn Redgrave's passing. She died of cancer, so unlike her character, it was long and painful.
  • Heartwarming Moments:
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    • Prudie convincing Dean to read Persuasion, and he ends up loving it. It's very sweet that the two had fallen out of love, but were able to reignite their marriage by understanding each other. The two are clearly much happier in the end.
    • Grigg gives Jocelyn a stack of sci-fi books that she keeps putting off reading. When she finally does, she finishes them all in one night and even runs out to a news stand to try and find the next one. It is rather sweet that Jocelyn came to love something she wouldn't normally have gone for in the same way Grigg came to enjoy Jane Austen's works.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Grigg references the works of Philip K Dick. Emily Blunt would later star in The Adjustment Bureau, an adaptation of a Philip K Dick short story.
    • Also watch The Spectacular Now for the Gender Flip of the sci-fi book subplot. There it's the girl who convinces her love interest to read Geeky sci-fi books.
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  • Jerkass Woobie: Prudie. At first, she's condescending, rude, and just unpleasant to be around altogether, but then her backstory is revealed (she had a neglectful mother, who dies in the film, with the last words Prudie spoke to her was for her to leave while she was staying in with her, a father who left her and thought the picture of a man her mother gave her was her dad, and a bully who humiliated her back in high school) makes her incredibly sympathetic. It also helps that Emily Blunt gave a heartbreaking performance as her.
  • Memetic Mutation: A minor example. But once Pride and Prejudice and Zombies came about, there were a few discussions about what each character would think of it. General consensus seems to be that Grigg would probably love it.
  • Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped: The story is rather on-the-nose about the "Reading Is Cool" Aesop, but it does stress that fiction acting as escapism from real life can be a good thing - and that simple love of fiction can bring people together. What's more is that this includes all genres - as sci-fi nerd Grigg ends up loving Jane Austen's books (as do Dean and Daniel), and the movie subverts the Sci Fi Ghetto when Jocelyn loves Grigg's sci-fi books.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Allegra can come across as rather mean-spirited, considering she loves antagonising Prudie at the meetings. While Prudie is rather pompous, Allegra seems to go out of her way to Troll her. Corinne's Muse Abuse of her can come across as Laser-Guided Karma.
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