Watch This: Gwyneth Paltrow does Jane Austen in a quintessential Miramax movie

Every day, Watch This offers staff recommendations inspired by a new movie coming out that week. This week: With Jessica Hausner’s peculiar period piece Amour Fou coming to theaters, we extend our hand to other 19th-century romances.

Emma (1996)

Sanding down some of its source material’s sharper edges, Emma remains the epitome of the mid-’90s Miramax period piece; it’s a light, fluffy confection whose liveliness and good humor outweigh its lack of depth. Adapting Jane Austen’s revered novel, screenwriter-director Douglas McGrath takes a spirited approach to the 19th-century English tale of young Emma Woodhouse (Gwyneth Paltrow), who spends a year attempting to play matchmaker for a number of acquaintances, the most prominent being Harriet Smith (Toni Collette), a new friend just starting out in high society. Emma’s efforts to set up Harriet with local minister Mr. Elton (Alan Cumming) help kick-start a roundelay of …

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