Reel Infatuation Blogathon: Mr. Knightley

RI Banner 2018Silver Screenings and Font and Frock are co-hosting this blogathon celebrating our screen crushes. Be sure to visit their sites to read all of the entries, I can’t wait to read them all myself.

I have a great many screen crushes, but one character who I really adore is a Jane Austen man. Forget a certain chap called Mr. Darcy, I want you all to put him right out of your minds now.

Say hello instead to a gentleman called Mr. Knightley.  He is the dashing leading man featured in Jane Austen’s 1815 comedy romance novel, Emma. 


Knightley at a party. Screenshot by me.

Knightley is a playful, gentle, teasing, smouldering, kind, tender and all round adorable and decent guy.

As played by the talented Jeremy Northam in Emma(1996), Knightley is also one of the sexiest and hottest men ever seen on the screen. Be still my beating heart! 😉 

Why do I like Knightley so much? Well for starters because he is the kind of guy who mates for life. He loves Emma with all of his heart, and you just know that he will never hurt or betray her. Knightley also loves Emma for her personality, rather than desiring her for the extremely shallow reason of mere physical attractiveness alone.

He is also not afraid to be brutally honest with Emma and he will tell her if she has done something nasty or morally wrong. I think that part of true love means being able to be completely honest and open with one another, and also to be able to point out and question unforgivable behaviour that one or both of you may exhibit. Knightley does just this when he tells Emma off for her cruel words to Miss Bates at the picnic and points out why those words were so horrible for her to say.

Knightley is the type of man that we all long to have in our lives (if we’re being honest with ourselves), someone who is a friend, a soulmate, a lover, and someone who accepts you for who you are warts and all.  

Northam’s Knightley also gets to deliver the most romantic and touching proposal speech I’ve ever heard. The proposal scene itself is gorgeous to watch. Knightley and Emma are in a wood and they are both bathed in sunlight. The words that Knightley utters to Emma in this moment are sincere, romantic, and they really touch my heart.

Knightley: “Marry me. Marry me, my wonderful, darling friend.”

                                          Part of the proposal scene. Screenshot by me.

Aww!  I’m telling you that this scene is the stuff that dreams are made of. 🙂 

If the beautiful proposal speech were not enough to get you wishing that he was your man, then the way Knightley looks at Emma in this scene should certainly do it. He looks at her with such tenderness and with a warm smile which will melt your heart. You can see how much he loves her and how much she loves him.

You can also see how desperately Knightely wants Emma to accept his proposal. Emma gazes back at him with an expression of equal love and desire on her face. It’s a beautiful moment and Jeremy Northam does such a fantastic job with his portrayal of Knightley. Quite how Jeremy has not become a bigger star over the years is beyond me.

Emma is one lucky lady. I hope she truly realises what a gem of a man she has in Knightley. Right then, I’m off to rewatch Emma (again)and spend some time in the company of the gorgeous Mr. K.  

Any other Knightley fans here?




19 thoughts on “Reel Infatuation Blogathon: Mr. Knightley

  1. Patricia Nolan-Hall (@CaftanWoman)

    I am a great admirer of Mr. Knightley, but I have never seen any film adaptations of Emma. It is one of my most cherished novels and I’m afraid! Nonetheless, your description of the talented Mr. Northam in this role is leading me to perhaps reconsider my stubbornness. (Mustn’t be an “Emma” about these things.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. maddylovesherclassicfilms Post author

      I understand your hesitation, Paddy, as quite often the character we see in our heads is seldom achieved on screen. Jeremy portrays the character very well though. His is the only portrayal I really like, the others are pretty bad.
      I greatly enjoyed reading your piece about number one son, Lee Chan. A handsome and resourceful character.


  2. Silver Screenings

    I need to watch this again, too! I just looked at my DVD collection and I realized that I don’t own it!! How is this possible?!

    Mr Knightley is a good man, and Jeremy Northam is the perfect casting choice. The character can be blunt, as in the scene where he tells Emma her treatment of Miss Bates was “poorly done”, but his assessment is fair. Miss Bates is someone who needs an advocate, not sarcastic judgment.

    Terrific choice, Maddy. Thank you for joining the blogathon, and for reminding me what a gem of a film (and book) this is.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Margot Shelby

    What a great blogathon, that I missed! I can’t wait to read everybody’s entry.

    Jane Auston isn’t quite my thing I have to admit, though I’ve both read the books and seen a few adaptations. I like your choice. It wouldn’t work for me, but then I’ve always preferred Snidely Whiplash over Dudley Do-Right. 😜

    Liked by 1 person

  4. maedez

    Thanks so much for participating in our little blogathon! I love both Mr. Knightley and Jeremy Northam, so I really appreciate your choice. And I remember loving the film at the time (although I haven’t seen it since).Thanks again!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. carygrantwonteatyou

    Jeremy Northam is so handsome–a perfect choice. And yes, I’ve always liked Knightley so much! He’s a great Austen hero. I like that he calls Emma out, though their brotherly relationship has always made me just a tad uneasy (Austen does the same with Edmund). In terms of film adaptations of Emma, I prefer Clueless. Its takes on the story are clever, and make me see the novel in a new light, much like Bride and Prejudice. But Paul Rudd doesn’t have a candle on Northam!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. thestoryenthusiast

    I think Mr. Darcy is overrated as an Austen hero and am so happy to read this tribute to Knightley. Although, I actually prefer the BBC’s 2009 version of Emma, I do think Jeremy Northam makes the best Knightley for all the reasons you just wrote about.

    Liked by 1 person


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