Saturday, April 27, 2013

Saturday, April 27, 2013 11:46 am by Cristina in , , , , , , ,    No comments
Peter McMaster's take on Wuthering Heights is still gathering reviews. From STV Entertainment:
McMaster and co-creators, Nick Anderson; Chris Hall; Thom Scullion and Murray Wason, use the novel’s themes, and the character of Heathcliff, as the leap off point to offer up a 70 minute riff on different facets and interpretations of masculinity, and male identity.
Beginning with a quick synopsis of the novel, its personae, themes and motifs, McMaster and co. then set about offering up a delicately balanced mix of intriguing set pieces and confessionals involving personal recollections of childhood; adolescence; father and son relations; hopes for the future, and what masculinity means.
Harbouring some doubts at first, I have to say it works surprisingly well. At one point McMaster relentlessly volleys a thought-provoking litany of questions about maleness at one of his co-creators, while elsewhere a coughing fit brought on by embarrassment becomes the cue for a primordial primal scream. Let it out boys, let it out.
It doesn’t all hang together. Having the cast pretending to be horses is just plain silly. A choreographed dance routine to the Kate Bush song Wuthering Heights while very funny, seems out of tune, and tone, with the rest of the piece’s serious attempt to get underneath the skin of masculinity. [...]
But taken as a whole, this is a moving, sensitive, engaging piece, recommended for both sexes. (Alan Chadwick)
The Times gives it 3 stars out of 5 while the Guardian's Theatre Blog includes it on its list of recommendations:
Upstairs, in the Arches' main studio, Peter McMaster presents an all-male reboot of Wuthering Hleights. All the familiar elements of Emily Brontë's novel are present, including ghosts. ill-fated passions and windows opened to storm-blasted moors. Instead of simply rehashing the story, however, McMaster has boiled the narrative down to its essential elements while drawing in aspects of the wider myth that surrounds Brontë's text.
There's much to enjoy here, from a faithful recreation of the iconic moves from Kate Bush's Wuthering Heights video to an entire sequence narrated from the point of view of a horse. But there's a serious side to the piece, too. McMaster and his four collaborators do a good job of harnessing the spirit of Brontë's tortured protagonist, Heathcliff, and the themes of the novel to create a playful medlitation on contemporary masculinity.
Though the piece feels disjointed and at times repetitive, a closing round of anecdotes on the men's relationships with their fathers and their own views on impending (Allan Radcliffe)
More on stage as Broadway World reviews Mustard Seed Theatre's production of Jane Eyre.
Playwright Julie Beckman does wonderful work in adapting Charlotte Brontë's novel, Jane Eyre, for the stage. It's so literate that the characters even voice their thoughts, giving way at times to some much needed humor for this sad, but hopeful Gothic tale of loss and romance. Mustard Seed Theatre's production of this play is superb, with excellent performances buoyed by incisive direction and lush interior design. [...]
Sarah Cannon is astounding as Jane, playing her from childhood to adult, and doing so flawlessly. Cannon is probably the only actress in St. Louis who can actually pull off this particular feat, and she's an absolute natural in the role of Jane Eyre. Her stellar performance is matched by the brooding talents of Shaun Sheley, who invests the part of Mr. Rochester with an initial uneasiness that eventually gives way to love. Rochester is a man shrouded in mystery and intrigue, and Sheley does a fabulous job bringing him to life. The supporting cast, many of whom play multiple roles, is also excellent and deserves mention: Gregory Cuellar, Katie Donnelly, Laura Ernst, Kathryn Hunter, Carmen Russell, Donna Weinsting, B. Weller and Leslie Wobbe all do marvelous work here.
Deanna Jent's direction is excellent as always, but particularly deserved of attention here for making this sprawling story seem intimate and engaging. The play is actually fairly long, but you won't notice it since you'll be completely drawn in to its charms. Dunsi Dai's set is amazing, complete with spiral staircase, and masterfully lit by Michael Sullivan. The music compositions by Leona Ernst fit the dour atmosphere most appropriately. (Chris Gibson)
The Arts Desk reviews The Brontës of Haworth DVD and gives it 3 stars out of 5:
Are we approaching some sort  of Brontë anniversary? Or is it simply the 40th anniversary of this long-forgotten dramatization of the “Brontë story” that’s being marked with a two-disc DVD release? The Brontës of Haworth has hardly gone down in the annals of TV drama history, such as, for instance, I, Claudius, the 1976 adaptation of the Robert Graves’ novel currently being repeated on BBC Two. This is probably not surprising, since the Roman emperor’s life was hardly lacking in incident, and the same cannot be said of the talented siblings Emily, Charlotte, Anne and their troubled, underachieving brother Branwell.
Scripted by playwright Christopher Fry and directed by Marc Miller the five-episode drama is a Yorkshire Television production, so perhaps a reminder that commercial television has never quite pulled off a costume drama with as much aplomb as the BBC. Still, it’s a tricky one. Talking and writing alone cannot a compelling drama make, and there are innumerable sequences which show the sisters simply talking and walking, literally in circles around a table, to ward off the frustration and boredom of their constricted lives. (Fisun Güner)
La Vanguardia (Spain) interviews writer Kate Morton and finds Brontë influences on her work.
La han influenciado la literatura gótica y la victoriana. Pero inquieta la mezcla de Brontë, Poe y Daphne de Maurier con Enid Blyton. ¿Lo truculento y lo ingenuo juntos?
Lo ingenuo me llega de los 4 a los 9 años con lecturas que poco a poco se van volviendo más siniestras. Pero lo que ha permanecido en mi obra es ese estilo inglés, ese carácter quedó grabado en mi mente para siempre. Creo firmemente que uno sólo debe escribir lo que le gusta leer. (Núria Escur) (Translation)
The Times also finds Brontë echoes in The House is Haunted by John Boyne.
This ghost story is great fun, even if it sometimes seems to have been built from a kit. There’s a youthful governess who might be unstable, two weird kids and various malign ghosts, plus a dash of Jane Eyre. (Kate Saunders)
Apollodoro (Italy) includes Wuthering Heights on a list of beautiful books with disappointing endings.
Cime tempestose’ è l’unico romanzo di Emily Brontë. Venne pubblicato per la prima volta nel 1847 e qui le obiezioni che vengono mosse al suo finale sono due. Prima di tutto, la maggior parte dei lettori voleva che la narrazione, specie della seconda parte, si incentrasse di più su Heathcliff e Catherine e non sui rispettivi figli. La seconda è che tutti volevano un excipit con una storia d’amore passionale fra i due, non solamente i due fantasmi che si tengono romanticamente per mano nella brughiera. Anche se a noi è sempre piaciuto questo amore oltre la morte. (Manuela Chimera) (Translation)
Another Italian website, Best Movie, reviews the film The English Teacher.
In una tranquilla cittadina della Pennsylvania Linda Sinclair (Julianne Moore) vive immersa nella passione per i libri, tanto da immolare tutta la sua vita in favore di quegli ideali puri e assoluti impressi nelle pagine di Dickens, delle sorelle Brontë e di tutti i classici della letteratura inglese. Ma gli stessi libri che le scaldano il cuore l’hanno isolata in una prigione di solitudine, correlando ogni rapporto sentimentale a quelli ideali aulici, difficilmente raggiungibili da qualsiasi essere umano. (Eva Carducci) (Translation)
Crushable comments on the fact that actor Chris Pine is now apparently single:
Okay so…I mean…I write on a funny blog for a living, and I’m pretty cynical, soooo maybe we’ll run into each other at one of the screenings for Star Trek Into Darkness and fall in love? I’ll be the one reading Wuthering Heights with a rose through my teeth. (Alexis Rhiannon)
A couple of alerts for today. Reported by the Halifax Courier:
Helen’s Heritage Walks and Talks welcome you to walk their way, this Saturday, April 27.
The guided walk will discuss the connection between Shibden Hall and Wuthering Heights.
Helen Broadhead, tour guide, said: “It’s likely that Emily Brontë was inspired by High Sunderland Hall, on the hill above Shibden Hall.”
Meeting at Mereside Cafe, Shibden Estate, at 10.30am. Charge £8.50. To book call 01274 532425.
And from La Opinión A Coruña (Spain), a screening of Wuthering Heights 2011:
El atractivo de la adaptación de Arnold pasa también por la forma de plasmarlo visualmente al ofrecer al espectador un puro deleite estético.La obra ha sido, además, galardonada en el Festival de Venecia y en el Festival de Valladolid-Seminci. La sesiones del Fórum serán este viernes a las 20.15 y 22.45 horas y el sábado a las 17.15 y 20.15 horas y la entrada, tres euros. (Translation)
Le nouvel économiste (France) quotes from a poem by Emily Brontë; Le Manège de Psylook (in French) posts about Jane Eyre; Grande Caps-Movies has uploaded lots of caps from Wuthering Heights 2011; the film gets a positive review on Double Exposure; Musings posts a drawing of a Charlotte Brontësaurus, literally.

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