Thursday, January 30, 2014

Movies and Books

I was in the middle of reading Joanna Trollope's Sense and Sensibility last week and stumbled upon the Emma Thompson version of the Austen classic.  Now, I saw this version when it first came out and fell in love with it.  Of course it can't be completely true to the book, literally. In this case, Thompson removed quite a few characters and that helped to keep the story from getting bogged down on film.  

I saw this movie before I ever read the book.  I think it made it a little easier to see the story and the characters in my mind and want to read it. Generally, I think it's best to see a movie before you read the book.  That way the movie can't ruin your reading experience.  You can see all that's missing, instead of mourning it and being aggravated by a screenwriter who feeds the masses a dumbed down and misinformed version of a literary treasure.  I have watched this version of Sense and Sensibility and read the book numerous times.  For people who aren't inclined to be able to get into a book that doesn't have contemporary language, watching the movie first can really help.

Now, Trollope's modernized version didn't really work for me.  My full review will be up, probably, early next week. I have, in the last few years, read a couple of books that were modern re-tellings of the Dashwood girls' story.  One a YA book, that I never remember the title of, but did enjoy. The other, was Cathleen Schine's The Three Weissmans of Westport.  Neither of these told the story faithfully, think more Bridget Jones as a retelling of Pride and Prejudice and the movie Clueless as the only version of Emma that I actually like. Both of the the books were done very well and definitely gave the same feel as the original material.  Trollope kept all the names of the characters and places from Austen's original, but she stripped away most of what I liked about the characters. 

Now, since I'm doing links without intending to today.  Here are a couple that you absolutely have to check out, in conjunction with this post.  First, flominowa has an amazing online gallery of Austen artwork, including Sense and Sensibility.  You can find it here.  
Nice, isn't it?  Now, if you follow anyone on Twitter, you have to follow @ModernClueless.  I really want to have a "Jane Austen the way I want to watch her works" movie marathon.  Super Bowl Shmuper Bowl! I might have to wait until I get my Lizzie Bennet Diairies, though.  Hank and Bernie promised they were impending in the last Kickstarter update I got the other day.

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