Monday, March 28, 2011

The film is not the book

Robert Gottlieb goes to town on the latest film version of Jane Eyre in the New York Review of Books. What he doesn't like is the lack of what makes the book so good—the essence of Jane Eyre. And as far as Gottlieb is concerned, Jane isn't alone in this. 'What we have here is the usual result when the movies take on a famous book with a singular voice. They hold on to the plot, the furnishings, even the language, but they lose the essence. It’s the problem with all the Vanity Fair adaptations—they give us Becky, they give us the Waterloo ball, but they can’t give us Thackeray’s sardonic vision of Vanity Fair. No filmed Moby Dick reflects Melville; no filmed Madame Bovary suggests Flaubert.' More...

(A nice bonus to the entry is the short clip of Orson Welles and Joan Fontaine. Now that is a marriage proposal.)

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