Becoming Jane (2007, GBR/USA) C-120m. SCOPE ** D: Julian Jarrold. Starring Anne Hathaway, James McAvoy, Julie Walters, James Cromwell, Maggie Smith, Joe Anderson, Lucy Cohu, Laurence Fox, Ian Richardson. Plodding drama about famed writer Jane Austen, whose letters provide the basis for this feature film. Hathaway plays the novelist, who is confronted with doubts and sexism in late 18th century England. Production design is superb, but the plot shows very little development and moves at a snail's pace. Richardson's last film.

© Ron Altman