Thursday, December 01, 2011

Glimpses of Happiness

Film4 published a few days ago an interesting interview with Andrea Arnold:

Andrea Arnold's Wuthering Heights isn't a teatime period drama. It is not a heritage product selling a romanticised vision of rural England as a garden populated by well-tended English roses just waiting for the right haughty yet rich gentleman to get over his damn self and pluck them. Thank goodness. But nor is an artfully stage-managed 'fuck you' to the establishment in the vein of the Sex Pistols' God Save The Queen - the type of rebellion indebted to the establishment for providing something to rebel against. Andrea Arnold's Wuthering Heights doesn't participate in any of that; it stands alone. (...)
“I didn’t look at any other adaptations, I didn’t think about anything that had gone before, I just tried to find my own relationship with it,” she says. “I wanted to make it an intimate thing.” Intimate is right: there’s always been something counter-intuitively claustrophobic about Wuthering Heights – for a story so associated with vast expanses of moorland, the characters are stuck in a very cramped world consisting almost entirely of each other, something that Arnold brings out vividly in her focus on the difference that interloper Heathcliff represents in this little world.
“His difference is key,” Arnold says. “And I wonder whether his difference is Emily [Bronte] expressing her own difference. She was so isolated in her own way, and I think she was exploring that through Heathcliff. I think her writing is about her. I think she felt singular and different and slightly isolated.” For a character where difference is so key thematically, and who is described physically in the book as being athletic, with black hair, thick, low brows, “dark-skinned”, “dark almost as if [he] came from the devil,” with “eyes full of black fire”, it’s remarkable that Arnold is the first director to cast an actor who begins to approach this. (...)
With Wuthering Heights, she realised that Heathcliff’s return isn’t just an attempt to return to Cathy. “For me, the childhood element was almost everything. Heathcliff wants to return to Cathy, but also to that place, to childhood, when he had some glimpses of happiness.” (Catherine Bray)
The Skinny opens what we think it will be a long list of the-best-of-2011 articles. This one about films:
Everyone agrees it’s been a stellar year for UK filmmaking, but what I find most interesting is that the year’s best British films all saw directors take a hammer to our narrow filmmaking traditions (kitchen sink dramas, literary adaptations, gothic horrors), then reassemble them to fit their own sensibilities. Andrea Arnold soaked her take on Wuthering Heights in mud, racism and four letter words. (Jamie Dunn)
We don't have any idea what this paragraph is saying,
“I wash my hair with egg yolk, and condition with vinegar.” This was heard at a conversation a few circles down — over near the spot where cutie-patootie recording artist Janelle Monáe would get the dancing party started soon enough. The woman with the organic hair regime was beautiful, in a Wuthering Heights-goes-to-the-Delano kind of way[.] (Shinan Govani)
It was published in an article about a Miami party in The National Post.

Thame's News reviews Jane Eyre 2011:
Wasikowska makes a memorable Jane, measured, self possessed and quietly intense; Fassbender is a suitably brooding and dangerously charismatic Rochester. (...) And the film’s aesthetics are muted and restrained, eschewing frills and bows in favour of sharp outlines and a bleak palate to match the spare beauty of the Yorkshire landscapes. Deepest December is just the time to revel in a swooningly passionate period romance, so join us for a real festive treat with this elegant and beautiful film. Bonnets and capes optional. 
Geeks of Doom announces an interesting Amazon offer with this film:
As part of their Cyber Monday Deals Week, Amazon is offering up the digital rental of the recent movie Jane Eyre, starring Mia Wasikowska and Michael Fassbender, for only $.99.
This deal is valid only for today, Thursday, December 1, 2011, until 11:59 PST. Once you activate the rental through Amazon’s Instant Demand service, you’ll have access to the movie for 24 hours. If you’re interested in purchasing the digital version, the cost is $14.99.
Express India interviews the writer Ruskin Bond:
“I grew up on films. When I was a boy, there were films that were based on novels of Dickens, Brontës, Austen-- these films were very well made. I do have certain reservations about my work being adapted but I have been lucky to have good directors adapt my stories into films,” said Ruskin. 
ArtDaily remembers the upcoming Sotheby's auction of Brontë items;  Tara Hank, bloginvain review Wuthering Heights 2011; Cinedania and Lunes de Cine con Ignatius (both in Spanish) and kunstundtfilm (in German)  review Jane Eyre 2011; Abigail's Ateliers reviews Blake Morrison's We Are Three Sisters; GuruLolita reviews Jane Eyre on YouTube, El rincón de los libros perdidos posts about the book in Spanish and Rebecca Chesney on the Brontë Weather Project is rereading it.

Finally a poem: Reading Jane Eyre on the bus, as published on Marginalia.

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