December 21, 2007

Eliot and Trollope

The Egalitarian Bookworm has a review of George Eliot's Daniel Deronda, both the book and the Andrew Davies adaptation. Speaking of classics, I recently read Anthony Trollope's Orley Farm and thought it would make for a fantastic adaptation, but I took a quick look at IMDB and couldn't find evidence of one. Orley Farm has all the legal thrills of a John Grisham book/film, plus several love triangles, making it ripe for dramatization. The connection between the two books? Trollope's theme is Justice, or the lack thereof, and the bigotry against a Jewish cross-examiner by his hypocritical peers and other "gentlemen" and "gentlewomen" plays a role in his argument. --Kim

December 20, 2007

Marie-Antoinette's Personal Taste

This glamorous sofa is just one of the items on display at the San Francisco Legion of Honor's Marie-Antoinette and the Petit Trianon at Versailles exhibit. It was a piece in a suite created for the queen's private study. More details on this and other pieces here. The exhibit runs through February 17, 2008. I'll be going just before the exhibit closes when I visit San Francisco the 6th through 11th of February so stay tuned for a full report.

Speaking of things Francophilic, I stopped over in Paris for four days on my way to London and among other things had afternoon tea at Laduree. Gilt, cherubs, and cake, oh my! --Kim

December 19, 2007

Bonham, Bon Amie

I feel like Helena Bonham Carter is the cool girl who lives down the street who you secretly have a girl-crush on even though she's crass, bosses you around and makes you play with a naked Ken doll the dog chewed on so she gets all the Barbies. I'm a little afraid of her and yet I want to be her friend.

Here's an interview with her talking about landing the Sweeny Todd role (yes, it was nepotism, but doesn't a Golden Globe nom sort of cancel out the stigma?)

Source: Dark Horizons

December 11, 2007


When I watched this movie last night I couldn't help but get a little paranoid that during production of this film my brain was secretly harvested for the visual memories of my reading experience, which were then transmogrified into celluloid. My name should have appeared somewhere in the credits, in fact. It was more or less EXACTLY as I had pictured it (except for some of the more random war scenes, which were scenes I probably had skimmed over in the book anyway.)

Here's what else I'd like to say about this film:

Barring the occasional exposed brains, just about every frame of this movie could be hung on your wall as a gorgeous piece of art.

Bathing caps really ought to come back in Vogue. I think I'll start painting my fingernails blood red.

I, too, would throw myself into a river in the hopes of James McAvoy coming to my rescue. He could break my vase any day. Or write me unexpectedly obscene letters.

I'm so glad that I still enjoy Keira Knightley and that she hasn't started doing Estee Lauder perfume commercials with puppies.

It's good to see Gina McKee (a.k.a. Irene Forsythe), if only briefly.

I evidently mispronounced Briony's name when I was reading it.

While is wasn't my FAVORITE. FILM. EVER., it didn't disappoint. The first half most definitely trumps what follows, but I think I'd probably say the same thing about the book. If Andrew Davies is Romancing the Tome's patron saint, I would definitely have to say that [Atonement director] Joe Wright is being fast-tracked for canonization.

December 7, 2007

Deadbeat Bloggers

If you haven't noticed lately, Kim and I have been engaging in a semi-hibernation, if you will. December does this to me every year: a general malaise comes about me just when life gets to be its most chaotic. I'm finding it even difficult to nail down a day to go see Atonement, which I've been looking forward to all year, and which has been getting rave reviews.

Kim has a better excuse than I do for all this: She's getting ready (any day now, in fact) to move across the Pond to try to make the measly U.S. dollar work for her in London. (I am jealous as all heck.)

I, meanwhile, am in the last throes of wedding planning, and it's making me wish my wedding could just be like it is in an Austen film: One minute the dashing, breeches-clad gent is on bended knee quavering heartfelt proclamations as I look on with tears welling. Cut to me and said breeches-clad gent emerging joyfully from some chapel with local villagers dancing around and waving streamers. No caterers to pay. No fire permits to be obtained. No half-assed attempts to make placecards on InDesign.

Anyway, we were so good at posting to this blog a month ago, and now, we've discarded it like that glob of cranberry sauce still hanging out in the fridge leftover from Thanksgiving.

To that end, I actually spent three minutes looking for some literary adaptation news to write about today and aside from finding that Colin Firth's signed on for a 3-D version of a Dickens classic, I got nothin'.

So instead, here's a link to this day in British malfeasant history.

Hopefully when Kim's settled into her airy and light-filled flat in Notting Hill, complete with low rent and two fireplaces (we can dream, can't we?) she'll give us weekly correspondence to make us turn green with envy.

And hopefully, I can weigh in on Atonment next week! In the meantime, here's an article on the film's to-die-for fashions from the L.A. Times.