Emma. ★★★½

Taylor-Joy is up to the task of playing the title role as a sympathetic character who, despite her conniving and manipulative behavior, does ultimately wish happiness for her unsuspecting matchmaking victims. This is mostly played for comedy but it is sometimes called out by her close friend Knightley who causes her to reevaluate her failures and just let people find their own happiness, even as she navigates her own fortunes.

The cast is adequate to very good, with standouts being Emma (the uniquely beautiful Anya Taylor-Joy), Mr. Elton (Josh O'Connor), Miss Bates (Miranda Hart), and Mr. Woodhouse (played with subtle hilarity by the great Bill Nighy).

This version is close enough to the source material with some modern sensibilities brought in for today's audiences.

All in all I quite enjoyed it... the gags playing with the pomp and circumstance of the era, the sets, the costuming, the classic dialog. If I had to choose just one film adaptation of Emma, though, I would have to go with my favorite from the 90s, the Gwyneth Paltrow/Jeremy Northam one.

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