Monday, August 1, 2011
MADELEINE'S NOVEL FILMS BLOGFEST ...
Madeleine Maddocks of Scribble and Edit is hosting the Novel Films Blogfest. How many novels and their film counterparts have you read/seen? This blogfest gives us the opportunity to let our blog friends know our favorites.
In my many years of reading and watching films, more than 90 percent of the time I enjoy the books more. Mainly because we envision stories, sets, characters, etc, differently than Hollywood.
HOWEVER, I do have a few novel/films that I just love. AND what is more interesting these three films are from the 1930's and '40's.
My all time favorite has to be Jane Erye. Charlotte Bronte's masterpiece. As for the novel.... A fantastic historical overview of society in 1840's Britain, about an orphaned girl's survival.
In the 1944 film, no other actor could play Rochester better than the immortal Orson Wells. His torment and power reflects every syllable he utters throughout the film. Joan Fontaine's performance as plain, mild-manered governess only accented Well's temperament. Their chemistry blended beautifully together.
We also get a glimpse of child star Elizabeth Taylor. Even then her beauty was strikingly evident.
My next selection is also written by a Bronte ... this time Emily, Charlotte's sister. Unnerving depiction of torment by the main character, Heathcliff: a gypsy boy raised by his cruel and abusive stepfather and his son. Only in the daughter, Cathy, did Heathcliff have any sense of kindness... that is until she matured and set her sights on their rich and socially acceptable neighbor's son. Tormented by his love for her did he leave and return as a wealthy man trying to win her back.... but life is never that easy.
The 1939 film was as wonderful as the novel. Oliver was THE perfect brooding and cruel Heathcliff. Merle Oberon played Catherine Earnshaw with such vulnerability and cruelty. You can feel her torment between her love for Heathcliff and her desire for raising her social status.
I've chose classics because vintage films portray their novel counterparts more accurately. They deal with more emotion than special effects. My final selection is another classic. Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind.
Of course there are many differences between the film and the novel. In the novel, Scarlett had a child with her first husband, Charles. Which had different scenarios than the movie.
The 1939 film did capture the novel perfectly in tone, society, costume, and DRAMA. Gable and Leigh set the screen on fire ... you could actually feel the heat. Not only did Atlanta burn .... If you ever get the chance to see it on the BIG screen do it. I was fortunate to view it in one of the vintage single screen theaters still standing back in my home town.
So these are my top three. I do have others, but these are truly my favorite couplings.
Don't forget to drop by Madeleine's blog for the other entries....