Archive for the ‘The period drama addict’ Category

An adaptation of Elizabeth Gaskell’s novel with the same name.
I love Elizabeth Gaskell and everything she wrote is pretty cool.
“Wives and daughters” is one of my favorites and it certainly has a delightful something that North&South lacks.It’s…(I hate using quotes) the magic of ordinary days and little things that make us happy.
Here we have the 19th century through the eyes of women.Lacking activity,being obedient,loving and waiting because…well,they were women in the 19th century.
I was sort of touched by the finesse of the movie.The characters seem kind of ethereal,especially Molly with her goodness and delicacy.The same with miss Matty from Cranford.
Elizabeth Gaskell had a flair for describing that kind of women that are almost like beings from out of this world.
The W&D miniseries feature Justine Waddell who also played Estella in “Great Expectations” and Tess Durbeyfield in “Tess of the D’Urbervilles”.
The plotline is rather simple and wikipedia is there for everyone
The movie is lovely:not very complex,light,sometimes funny,sometimes sad,innocently serious and of great sensibility.
That’s the thing with these british novel adaptations,isn’t it?They’re all so sensible(except for the Thomas Hardy ones but I don’t really dig those).
I had the intention of naming my favorite moments in the movie,but I can’t think of any even though right now I can’t think of a movie I’d like to rewatch more.I guess this movie stuck with me more not because of remarcable moments,but because of the impression it left me with.
Anyway,Molly being the most impressive character in the movie(due to her kindness and obedience and,as I already said,her being ethereal),I liked Cynthia immensely,much more than Molly(whom,to tell the truth,I can’t understand fully,but then again,I can’t understand any docile person,and she is so much like a Dickens character)
Cynthia is interesting and cool and not the kind of person that should live in a small village.I’d’ve loved to meet her,we would’ve been friends.
Molly is like the perfect 19th century girl.She has no flaws.She’s discreet and doesn’t stand out,yet she is remarcably intelligent, obedient yet independent in thought and with rare bursts of passion.
Oh,she is so flawless,I can’t want to be her.
I didn’t get to like Osborne,I think the actor may have done a less than good job,’cause at times I thought he was creepy or something close to creepy,like cheesy,while I don’t think that was the intention.
As for Roger,oh,maybe they don’t make guys like that anymore.And even if they do,I don’t think one of those would be a good match for me.
I actually liked mr Preston.Of course,the heart goes to the main characters,that’s what the director wants,but,oh well,he wasn’t exactly the vilain,he was just the unwanted.
Other interesting characters are squire Hamley and Hyacinth.Oh,I just realised what the best moment in the movie was,it was the squire’s way of telling the doctor that his new wife is ridiculous,”I’m not saying she was very silly,but one of us was silly and it wasn’t me”.HA!
Squire Hamley was perfectly pictured by sir Michael Gambon.
Lovely movie.I think it’s a little underrated though,it’s not as appreciated as it should be.BBC makes great movies,it’s a pitty they don’t make more.


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Sleepy Hollow is,according to wikipedia,a horror film,made in 1999,based on W.Irving’s story “The legend of Sleepy Hollow” and starring Johnny Depp,Christina Ricci,Michael Gambon and Christopher Walken.And a lot of other big names,but these are the ones I like.
The movie follows the story of Ichabod Crane,a police constable from New York,sent to the little town of Sleepy Hollow to investigate a series of brutal slayings in which the victims were found beheaded.
The locals believe that the killer is the Headless Horseman.Crane does not believe them until he meets him.
Boarding a room at the Van Tassels,Crane develops an attraction to their daughter,the mysterious Katrina.In the end…spoilers spoilers spoilers,it turns out that the horseman was manipulated by Katrina’s stepmother who still had the horseman’s head.
All is well when it ends well.The final scene is with Ichabod and Katrina in New York,right in time for the new century(1800).

As I said before,according to wikipedia,it’s a horror film.But it’s not really.It’s not scary at all(except maybe for small children),it’s just that it has some murders,witches,a headless zombie on a horse and the Inquisition.
In my opinion,this is Tim Burton at it’s finest,with all the gory details but with a bit of a brighter note(not a big fan of The demon barber or Edward Scissorshands),without being all bright and shiny(Big Fish).
The music is impressive,it gets to you and it does what movie music should do(and to be honest,rarely does acceptably),it makes you feel like you’re in the movie and it’s the only frightening thing there.
The Sleepy Hollow OST is Danny Elfman’s best work.Except for the Nightmare before Christmas.

The setting was almost entirely built.And it’s creepy in a good Tim Burton way.It actually makes me think of Snow White because I always thought that is a dark story.Anyway,as I was saying,visually it’s a typical Tim Burton set.
I loved it entirely,I wouldn’t change a thing and it’s the movie that opened the Tim Burton world for me.
My favorite scene was when Ichabod cuts the dead widow open,then comes out full of blood like a butcher and says that whoever did this was mad.
Enjoy 🙂

Ichabod Crane faints quite a lot

He doesn’t mind so much being around dead bodies,but he hates spiders.
Stab it!

Well,he does mind being around dead bodies

Ichabod Crane rulez!

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Onegin has got to be the best movie I’ve seen in a long long time.
For plotline go to wikipedia.I’ll just give you what I understood.
It’s about meeting true love and recognizing true love.Tatyana knows she will love Onegin since the first time she sees him.And she does.She can’t stop loving him.But Onegin,bored and condescending ,fails to understand himself.
Years later,he finds that he does love her,but it’s now too late.She loves him still,she’s unhappy but she is married and she is determined to be loyal to her husband.
It sounds…hmm.It sounds cheesy somewhat.There are so many films about adultery and love outside marriage…I hate the concept, it’s cheap,but this is different.This seems real.
And I can relate to the characters.I understand Tatyana’s passionate yet stable and loyal nature.And I understand Onegin too.He didn’t know himself,he didn’t understand and when he began to,he repressed his feelings using what he called reason.
Of great importance in this film,are the social interactions,typically Russian.Not much action,but a lot of psychology.
I thought those and the eye games were very interesting.I was captured(but my brother and sister both thought it was boring…hmmm,the Lara Croft generation).The psychological aspects of each conversation,were,in a subtle way,underlined.And every glance had it’s importance.The characters didn’t even need to talk much to explain themselves,they were,even speechless,self explanatory.But not transparent as in…not exposed for the entire party to see.
It’s so hard to explain.
Perhaps the intensity of the feeling is so well transmitted to the viewer because it’s not exposed verbally,but by means of non verbal communication.
Tatyana and Evgheni are both tortured souls.There are no words to express the tortures of a soul in a way that is as powerful as silence.
Of course the actors were amazing,Ralph Fiennes and Liv Tyler.
The music was wonderful,I kept looking for the soundtrack but I can’t find it.Perhaps one day I’ll buy it.
One day I’ll read the book too.
This movie ends unhappily.The two people who love each other,who are perfect for each other and who will love each other all their lives,cannot be together.It is their destiny to not be together.
But to me,it was not an unhappy ending.I only saw the love bit.They love each other.
Love is said to cause pain,but no one wants to live without it.Is it better to live without pain and without knowing true love,or is it better to love and suffer?
Of course it’s the latter.And it seems to me that as the movie ends,both characters are bigger,know themselves better,perhaps respect themselves more(I mean self respect).
I am an incurable optimist.As the movie ends,the story continues.
And I’ll even throw in a clip ;).

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Cold Comfort Farm is a comic novel by Stella Gibbons, published in 1932. It parodies the romanticised, sometimes doom-laden accounts of rural life popular at the time, by writers such as Mary Webb.
The heroine,Flora Poste is 20 and she is an orphan with little to live on.She is looking for relatives to live with.She chooses to stay with the Starkadders,the least bad choice.
From the very beginning it is obvious that Flora trusts herself and her judgement very much.She is strong hearted,good and brave,but spoilt.
Charles,a friend from London,seems to be in love with her,but she’s not really contemplating marriage.Her mind is focused on the development of the novel that is intended to make her famous by the time she’s fifty.
As she goes to live with the Starkadders,she decides to do her best to improve their life style.My favourite line was “I think the curtains in my room are red,but I’d like to make sure”.
She teaches a woman that’s been impregnated by Seth four times,about family planning and contraception.She discoveres that Seth has a passion for movies and introduces him to a movie director.She encourages her uncle Amos to pursue his dream of becoming a nomadic preacher while his son,Reuben,who is truly interested in the farm,gets it.
Also,Flora turns Elfine into a graceful lady so that she can bewitch the man she’s in love with.
And the greatest of Flora’s achievements is with Ada Doom,Judith’s mother,who only leaves her room on special occasion and who terrorises the entire family by constantly reminding them that no one ever leaves Cold Comfort Farm and that she saw something nasty in the woodshed.
Flora uses a copy of Vogue magazine to tempt her to join the twentieth century, and spend some of her fortune on living the high life in Paris.
Bottom line,Flora brings good sense into the family,reason and …the 20th century really.
It all seems pretty gloomy in the farm as Flora arrives,the atmosphere seems very likely to draw you in and when that moment comes,Flora’s good sense brings everything down to reality in a very comic way.[This is british comedy at it’s finest.]
The intention is to mock the popular romantic stories that are meant to creap you out(I wonder if that is grammatically correct).It also seems to me that is mocks Dickens a bit,because we’ve got all the insane characters.Amos is a fanatic,Judith has a passion for her son,Ada keeps saying “And I saw something nasty in the woodshed” while Elfine is doing the fairy thing all the time combined with obsessing about poetry.
So we’ve got the nosey Emma Woodhouse in a creepy Bronte house that’s full of Dickens lunatics.
It can’t be but good.
And what I loved best was that in the end,Flora concludes that writing novels is not for her and she chooses to marry Charles.
There were lots of funny bits.Stephen Fry rules and Kate Beckinsale really was something before she went to Hollywood and ruined her career with vampire movies.I think she should’ve won an Oscar for this part.
And it OH so sensible a movie!It erks sense![I hope erks is a real word]
It’s like a wake up call.Lose your prejudices and romantism,it’s time to live in the real world and improve.
I think this is squeezing in my top 10.In fact,I think it’s going to make into in the top 5.

And here’s a clip with a present :)…Stephen Fry and Ian McKellan…in one clip 🙂

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Oscar Wilde was a genius! as we all know.An Ideal Husband is not his best work,his best work is The Importance Of Being Ernest,but AIH is a pretty good second.
The point of the story is that we are all humans,make mistakes.Nobody is perfect and one should love people with their defects included and even love them for their defects.There is no such thing as an ideal husband and no one should live under the pressure of trying to preserve the image of perfection.
For plotline,go to wikipedia.
The dialogue is very much the same as in the play… as in it doesn’t deviate from the point,but it’s adapted,placed in other settings and order.But that’s not a problem at all,I actually admired the creativity and resourcefulness of whoever made this movie.
For example,in the play,the scenery doesn’t change much.We are at the Chiltern’s,at Goring and then back at the Chiltern’s.It’s dull,but practical if you’re at the theatre.However,in the movie,Lady Chiltern encounters mrs Cheveley while riding,all the characters go to the theatre to see “The importance of being ernest” and you actually can hear the ending line “Not at all,aunt.I only just understood the importance of being ernest” or something like that,after which Oscar Wilde comes out from behind the curtain and salutes the audience.It’s brilliant.People in an Oscar Wilde play watching an Oscar Wilde play.And there’s a lot more other inventive modifications that do not in any way alter the play,but improve it.I think Oscar Wilde wouldn’t have minded a bit.
I appreciated the fact that mrs Cheveley’s character is modified too.She is not accused of stealing,nor does lord Goring have to steal the letter from her.She gives it to him willingly after hearing Robert’s honorable speech.She acknowledges defeat very gracefully.I liked mrs Cheveley very much in this adaptation.She has scrupules,but you can still hate her.She’s manipulative,but you’ve got to like her.I also thought Julianne Moore was a great choice for this new,improved character.It actually proves Oscar Wilde’s point.People aren’t all black and white,good and bad.Good people have done bad things and bad people have done good things.
Other stuff to mention…Cate Blanchett is gorgeous,Rupert Everett is so lovable with his distinguished detachment and Minnie Driver is perfect to be Mabel…childish, beautiful, picky, witty and funny.
Bottom line,great film,do watch!
Oh,I feel I haven’t said enough about Cate Blanchett.Well,she’s amazing!

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Everybody knows how this beautiful Shakespeare story goes.Benedick and Beatrice,Claudio and Hero.Love conquers all and wickedness gets punished.
The 1993 version of this play is brilliant and also one of the most financially successful Shakespeare movies.
Starring Kenneth Branagh as Benedick, Emma Thompson as Beatrice, Keanu Reeves as Don John, Kate Beckinsale as Hero and Denzel Washington as Don Pedro…this movie has an impressive actor list and oh,my!don’t they deliver the story beautifully?
My only problem was with Emma Thompson.I know she’s brilliant,I’ve seen her in Howards End,Sense and Sensibility and The remains of the day.She is indeed a great actress and I can’t say she didn’t do the role justice,but there was just something there missing!Or something that shouldn’t have been there.
This Beatrice seemed a bit sower,disappointed and at times,absurd.As if someone had broken her heart.maan3
All the others did a great job,except for Denzel Washington and Kenneth Branagh…they did an AAAAmazing job!
And here’s a clip…Shakespeare rules!

Honestly!Could there be a better Benedick?Damian Lewis make a pretty good job in the Shakespeare retold,but this piece of genius is unbeatable.
Go team Branagh!

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The movie “Horatio Hornblower-The even chance” is the first in a series of films based on C.S Forester’s novels about the fictional navy officer Horatio Hornblower.
I only saw “The even chance” and there are 8 films in total,all starring Ioan Gruffudd as the main character.
At first the story seems boring,but give it time,it gets better.
Moment 1:We are introduced to a shy,sea-sick 17 year old boy who is to serve as a midshipman on the ship of a dying captain.The men have no occupation,since England is not at war,but to bully each other and senior midshipman Jack Simpson does that very effectively to Horatio.The poor boy even thinks about suicide.
After being beaten and insulted,Horatio challenges Simpson to a duel but Clayton,a midshipman who has been accused by Simpson to be a coward,knocked him unconscious and fought the duel in his place.His last words were that Simpson indeed had to be faced,but not by a boy.He dies and Simpson is merely hurt.
Moment 2:The war begins and with it begins a new stage in Horatio’s life.
He joins the frigate Indefatigable and is given the command of a french captured cargo vessel.
The vessel is holed and he cannot save it.They must abandon ship and the saving boat gets filled with both Englishmen and Frenchmen in equal number.The French captain takes control over the boat and turns it towards France,but Horatio had intentionally marked the wrong location on the map and so the boat just can’t get to land.While floating,they are found by the frigate and Horatio is congratulated and admired by his men.

Moment 3:The midshipmen(including Simpson now) enroll in a difficult mission of taking over the French ship Papillon.In the confusion of the battle,Simpson purposely shoots Horatio(but ineffectively) and sets another midshipman adrift,thus killing him.
When Eccleston,who was in charge,dies,he asks Horatio to take the command,but Simpson attempts to challenge Horatio’s authority invoking his experience.Horatio has him imprisoned and saves the day.

Finale:Simpson challenges Horatio to a duel.Obviously he is now impressed and a bit scared by what he thought was just a 17 year old boy.He shoots at the count of two instead of three and makes a poor shot,to the shoulder.Now it’s Horatio’s turn to shoot,but he doesn’t because it would be too much like an execution.Simpson is begging him not to shoot,but when Horatio turns his back,he attacks him with a knife.Cpt.Pellew who was watching the duel from a distance and with a riffle in his hands.shoots him.
The story takes us to see the development in Horatio’s self confidence and determination.
1.At first we see an unpromising boy,but his decision to challenge Simpson shows he has guts.
Meanwhile we find that he is truly honorable,intelligent and ambitious.
2.Horatio is much more determined,he is stronger,he is able to rule his men and make order.
He is also cunning,quick and very brave.
3.The shy boy is now a leader;men look up to him and have reason to fear him.He has all the qualities a hero should have.There’s nothing boyish about him now.

So I liked the movie a lot.
At first I was bored because of all the bullying and I kind of found it unrealistic.I mean how many men in their twenties are so easily scared by one man?Moreover,how many strong men in groups of 4 would be scared of one man who has nothing better to make him scary than his seniority and wickedness?So…hmmm,I dunno,too much like the nowadays highschool movies.
And I also fail to understand the whole dueling thing.How strange can duels be?Two men sit in front of each other at 10 feet and shoot at the count of three.It seems so pointlessly sacrificial and random.The same thing always hits me about the 18th century battle scenes.Armies just get in position one in front of the other one and just shoot.Positions must be kept and men must only shoot when they are ordered too.And so it’s all done neatly.One army shoots and the other one waits to take the shots.This absurdity is obvious in “The patriot”.Was this part of an honor code?
Seriously,I am in the mist here.
The best bit about this movie was,for me,the rescue boat.Horatio threw the compass in the water even though he had a gun pointed at his head and then we find out he had the presence of spirit to wrongly map his route.I was impressed.
Also he was very brave when he climbed the pole even though he was afraid of heights.
And of course,there is the final duel in which he kills Simpson.Why did Simpson have to be such a bad guy?I would’ve loved Horatio just the same in opposition with a less evil and therefore more believable character.
Strange bit:This movie praises war a lot.Everybody is so happy when war bursts,all the midhipmen are euphoric,but none of them says something like…Oh,we might lose friends in this war.Nothing like that.In fact,the captain’s attitude when he sends Horatio on the frigate is …Boy, I am giving you this chance to make a great career.HELLO!He’s 17!!He might very well die and have no career!And all the midshipmen we meet on the Justinian,except for Horatio,die.
I haven’t read the book(because I couldn’t find it),but my guess is it’s written in a sienkiewicz manner.
But I’m not complaining.
“Horatio Hornblower-The even chance” isn’t a girl story.It doesn’t even have one single female character,but I loved it.It’s more than a war movie,it’s a growing up during the war movie.
It’s a guy movie really.Just guy guy guy.And me movie.Because I like war movies.

Aaaaand Ioan Gruffudd is so beautiful(awwww) and has such girly features in this movie.He was very young during the shooting.He was positively adorable ;)).

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