Sit back, relax, and have some tea and crumpets. This post is quite long.
You may (or may not) have read my “About” page where I stated that I’m a fan of period dramas. I mean, can’t a girl run away from all the bad Hollywood stuff and ride her Delorean back to the 1800s British world? I think every girl needs to. And don’t mind the guys (especially dads!) rolling their eyes in the background as you watch and asking themselves why girls like that kind of stuff (the guys will then go back to doing stuff girls can’t understand so I guess we’re even).
Anyhoo, if you feel convinced that I have just convinced you to watch period dramas (if you haven’t already), here’s a list of all the period dramas I have watched. I rated them all with 1 being “oh I should’ve read a book about a monkey’s appreciation for bananas instead” and 5 being “jaw drops…speechless…hears cricket chirping” and reviewed each one very briefly because unfortunately I don’t have all the time in the world (note: because I rated them based on my opinion my ratings could possibly make you a little angry and annoyed which means I may have initiated an online period drama debate but let’s keep this simple so we can move on: you respect my opinion, and I’ll respect yours 🙂 ).
- Pride and Prejudice (1995) – 3.5 stars – I liked it, ‘twas quite good, but I don’t see Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy (Matthew Macfadyen steals the Mr. Darcy Show, sorry not sorry). Buut…my mom thinks this is better than the movie because it’s more faithful to the book, but anyway she’s my mom 🙂
- Pride and Prejudice (2005) – 4.5 stars – (Btw, my mom thinks it’s kinda unrealistic, or she doesn’t agree, with rating this 5 stars… *sighs*) Okay can we just talk about how perfect this one is and how it is the best period drama ever and how Keira Knightley was perfect as Lizzie and Matthew as Mr. Darcy and the characters/storyline/sets/costumes were amazing and *forever goes on as the period drama debate begins*.
- Emma (1996 feature film) – 4 stars – I actually haven’t decided which Emma adaptation is best, though I prefer the Gwyneth Paltrow ‘Emma’ over the Romola Garai ‘Emma’, and because this version is a movie the storyline obviously feels a little rushed with a 500+ page book crammed into a 2-hour movie. But nonetheless, this film is amazing and worth watching!
- Emma (2009) – 4 stars – This one is a 4-episode BBC TV serial and I think I enjoyed it as much as the movie – if not I like it 3.2615% more, but that’s not a big difference so I won’t make a big fuss about it – and the characters, sets, etc. are amazing as well (the video quality is way better too!).
- Grand Hotel (2011) – 4.5 stars – Now this one’s pretty different from the rest. First of all, it’s a Spanish telenovela, and the English subtitles proved to be ever so helpful. Second, I don’t believe I’ve ever been so hooked in a period drama series before. It had it’s riveting mix of murder, mystery, drama, romance, and comedy (what other mystery show contains all of THIS). This binge-watch-worthy series will get you nail-biting, squealing of fear, crying, aw-ing, and laughing so hard till everything hurts. You’ll probably learn some Spanish too.
- Cinderella (2015) – 4 stars – Yes, this is a period drama. I probably would’ve rated this 5 stars back in May last year when I first watched it, but of course this movie released on DVD and Netflix and I couldn’t help but watch it over and over again so yeah…
- The Young Victoria (2009) – 4 stars – I really liked this one! It’s a historical/romantic period drama about the life of Queen Victoria and her meeting and falling in love with Prince Albert. Because this is all about royalty the sets are obviously very beautiful and sophisticated. A must-watch!
- Miss Potter (2006) – 3 stars – This one’s about the love life (not sure if the events were real) of the well-known author Beatrix Potter. A sweet and sad movie to watch on one of your sweet and sad days.
- Little Women (1994) – somewhere between 3.5 and 4 stars – 4 sisters, one challenging life. Little Women is a sweet period drama in which the romances can get a bit confusing! But overall, I recommend it!
- Sense and Sensibility (2008) – 3.5 stars – S&S is not as upbeat and bubbly as P&P and Emma, so don’t expect the same kind of ‘period drama vibe’ (I shall never say that again I promise) – however it is still a good series about the high hopes and betrayals of love, which can really hurt to watch.
- Death Comes to Pemberley (2013) – somewhere between 3.5 and 4 stars – If you’re looking to watch a dark-themed period drama I suggest you watch Death Comes to Pemberley, based on the sequel-novel to Pride and Prejudice that wasn’t written by Jane Austen, so the ‘period drama vibe’ (whoops I said it) is way different. Obviously because this one’s about murder and the court/law and it’s actually really intriguing. I also thought Anna Maxwell Martin was miscast as Lizzie, but oh well.
- Little Dorrit (2008) – 3.5 stars – Another really good dark period drama is Little Dorrit. It can get pretty scary and dark but it all adds to the mystery and enigma of this series. Plus, you get to see Mr. Darcy Arthur Clennam 🙂
- Persuasion (2007) – 3.5 stars – This is another cute Jane Austen-based period drama, though the video quality got to me at times. Other than that this movie is pretty good, and kinda sad too. But all these period dramas end in ‘happily-ever-afters’ anyway.
- Cranford (2007) – 3 stars – This one’s a good show to watch. It’s about the gossipy ladies of Cranford, and the arrival of Dr. Harrison just adds to the gossip. Make sure you close your eyes during the disturbing medical procedure parts!
- Wives and Daughters (1999) – 3 stars – This is a good one, and the name is pretty self-explanatory – it’s about a wife, or a mother, and her stepdaughter and how they both don’t really click.
- Jane Eyre (2011) – 2 stars – I personally didn’t really like this one – no offence to those Jane Eyre fans out there! As the storyline progressed it became darker and scarier…some scenes from this movie that replayed in my head gave me the shivers! If you want to go ahead and watch this movie, watch Pride and Prejudice afterwards to get your mind off of the dark stuff 🙂
Yay! Your tea and crumpets are now gone!
I think those are all the British romantic period dramas I have watched! Keep checking back on this post because I will update the list when I watch more period dramas. Cheerio! 🙂