tempestsarekind: (austen snark is the best snark)
I keep being tempted to come up with new headlines for this article, like, "Let's all celebrate a man's mediocrity!" or "Being male means never having to live up to your potential in order to still have people devote time and energy to you."

It's time to bring Branwell, the dark Brontë, into the light
https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/jun/26/its-time-to-bring-branwell-the-dark-bronte-into-the-light

I think this was the paragraph that really made my eyelid twitch:

Branwell’s imaginative terrain was vast and impressive. He had the ability to rework a variety of histories and literary genres, immersing himself in an imaginative world that showcases a sophisticated interpretation of the world around him. Yet, despite this engagement, his writings are often derivative and undisciplined, often degenerating into a rambling stream of consciousness. If nothing else, however, these early years saw Branwell as an instrumental figure that inspired his sisters to harness their own imaginations and opinions. Branwell’s contribution was influencing his sisters to become the perceptive, avant-garde writers we know. (my emphasis)


Ugh. So…he wasn't actually good at writing, is what you're telling me, but we should talk about him more anyway?

The thing is, I don't even really have any opinions about Branwell, ordinarily. It's just that every time I hear about him, it's usually someone trying to make him central to the successes of his sisters, or focusing on him and his antics rather than on the creativity and artistic discipline of, you know, the Brontes who actually had flourishing literary careers. (The recent TV costume drama about the Brontes, To Walk Invisible, was regrettably guilty of this, passing over the composition of whole novels in an eyeblink while spending whole scenes on Branwell's conning their father out of money to spend on liquor.) I'm not saying that we should never talk or think about Branwell; rather, I feel like he gets talked about all the time - and maybe out of proportion to his actual accomplishments. It's that same insidious desire we seem to be afflicted with, culturally: we rack our brains to figure out ways to make a man responsible for a woman's literary successes - whether it's spending ages trying to work out who the "Master" of Emily Dickinson's poems might be, or making whole movies devoted to the idea that Jane Austen only became a novelist because Tom Lefroy recommended Tom Jones to her and broke her heart, to this. Why is it so hard to give these women their due? It's just dressing up the Victorian idea that Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell could never really have been women in slightly more modern clothing: a man had to have had his hand in the thing, somewhere.

uh what

Oct. 29th, 2014 11:12 pm
tempestsarekind: (all the world's a stage)
(I had to use this icon. I mean, Shakespeare and witches, on TV?)

My best friend sent me a screencap of this article the other day, but I didn't have a chance to go looking for it until now:

Mark Harmon Developing Young William Shakespeare Drama for CW
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/mark-harmon-developing-young-william-743826

"Described as a tale of black magic, romance and revenge, the drama is set in 1590s London and chronicles a young Will Shakespeare's rise to prominence as he finds himself caught in a deadly conflict among three witches and the most powerful woman in the world, Queen Elizabeth. The project is described as having the grit of HBO's hit fantasy drama Game of Thrones with the wit and heart of Shakespeare in Love."

I don't…particularly see those two things going together? At all? And presumably - this being the CW - we can expect all the historical accuracy and coherence of Reign. I'm mildly terrified.

(This is probably the wrong place for this gripe, but I really wish that costume drama in general - and historical fiction, especially set in the Tudor period - weren't so tied to real historical people. I get that it's an easy pitch - it's a movie about Jane Austen in a love story of her own! or whatever - but it's lazy and often not particularly useful, since they don't generally manage to dramatize any of the actual interesting things in that historical figure's life, and make up confusing, nonsensical plots instead. [Seriously, why would you make an Elizabeth I movie and then not use the Tilbury speech when it's right there? Why is the film The Duchess so DULL when Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire's life was so interesting? Why is Becoming Jane, at all?] I feel like I would be seventeen times more interested in this show if it weren't about a young William Shakespeare.)

(There are at least two books out at the moment that I have just put down at the library/bookstore, or preemptively put down - one of them isn't out yet - because I can't be bothered with Will Shakespeare Sexytimes: Dark Aemilia by Sally O'Reilly - even though I would actually be interested in a novel about Aemilia Lanyer (though I'd prefer a biography) - and The Tutor by Andrea Chapin. It's not even because I've already read tons of these, because I haven't. [Is the only novel I've read that's predominantly about Shakespeare - as opposed to containing a Shakespeare cameo - The Players by Stephanie Cowell? That can't be right, can it? … Maybe it is. I read Grace Tiffany's My Father Had a Daughter - how could I not, it played right to my Judith-as-Viola feelings - but I never got around to reading Will...] My brain just ughs off of these books, for some reason. And yet Shakespeare in Love is one of my favorite movies...)

Also contained within this article:

This development season, The CW also is exploring the 20-something years of Charles Darwin and his journey through the Amazon with Unnatural Selection.

…whaaaaat.
tempestsarekind: (facepalm)
Stop calling me to ask if I've heard about Anonymous. Seriously. It's like Becoming Jane all over again. Yes, I've heard about it. No, I'm not happy about it. No, you don't actually want my opinion, trust me.
tempestsarekind: (facepalm)
Stop calling me to ask if I've heard about Anonymous. Seriously. It's like Becoming Jane all over again. Yes, I've heard about it. No, I'm not happy about it. No, you don't actually want my opinion, trust me.
tempestsarekind: (very few dates in this history)
And the internet provides: Abridged Classics: Becoming Jane
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FoFfX4LfU2E

My favorite bit is perhaps the "waistwatch," which points out that for some reason Jane Austen is wearing gowns that are entirely too early for the period of the film. Or maybe it's the shot of Laurence Fox with the caption that just reads "[deserves better than Jane]." But the whole thing amused me. And it has the virtue, unlike myself, of being concise.
tempestsarekind: (very few dates in this history)
And the internet provides: Abridged Classics: Becoming Jane
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FoFfX4LfU2E

My favorite bit is perhaps the "waistwatch," which points out that for some reason Jane Austen is wearing gowns that are entirely too early for the period of the film. Or maybe it's the shot of Laurence Fox with the caption that just reads "[deserves better than Jane]." But the whole thing amused me. And it has the virtue, unlike myself, of being concise.
tempestsarekind: (palm to palm is holy palmers' kiss)
I feel a bit like I’m going “Why does it hurt when I poke myself in the eye?,” but Becoming Jane is still irritating me. A few brief things, and then the major one:

1) I’m not sure why I’m supposed to like Tom Lefroy when he’s actually a bit mean. In the interest of full disclosure, I really like Laurence Fox because of Inspector Lewis, so I’m automatically sympathetic to this character, and this character is more my “type,” but still. His character, Wisley, and Jane are dancing and Wisley’s a terrible dancer--he botches a step and treads hard on Jane’s foot. Embarrassed, he apologizes, saying that he’s “mortified” and that he practices dancing, but it just doesn’t stick. Cut to Tom Lefroy looking down from a balcony (ah, the subtlety!--he’s actually looking down at the assembly!), laughing and smirking. And he’s supposed to be our hero--the guy who laughs at other people’s embarrassment? I get that he’s supposed to be fulfilling the Darcy role here and all (although he’s also Wickham, which is just weird), but seriously.

2) Something that isn’t really related to the Austenian aspects of the film: I could wish that filmmakers were less enamored of the idea that antagonism is the only form of romantic tension possible--but if you’re going to do it, then please, make sure that antagonism doesn’t merely stand in for attraction. Two people arguing doesn’t necessarily mean that they are secretly in love with each other. No, not even in Pride and Prejudice--because that’s not what actually happens in the novel. Elizabeth genuinely dislikes Darcy, what with the rudeness, and the ruining the happiness of a most beloved sister, and all. She comes to discover that she was misinformed about some of his behavior; he changes other aspects of his behavior; then she falls in love with him, realizing she didn’t know him as well as she thought. She’s *not* secretly in love with him the whole time. This does sometimes get read back into adaptations (*cough P&P3’s first proposal scene cough*), but it’s not really there in the novel. And it seems to me a lazy way to set up a relationship if it’s not done right--and it’s really not done right here, in my opinion.

3) The whole “we’re so different from all the other, stuffy costume dramas” meme is one that always irritates me, and here it’s compounded by the idea that the filmmakers are showing all the bits that we supposedly never get in Austen, but it’s particularly discordant in this case, when the film is so indebted to Austen’s novels and to adaptations of those novels. in which the film is a weird Austenian mash-up )

4) I needed--to be fair to this film--to examine why I find it so infuriating when Shakespeare in Love, which also plays fast and loose with the biography of a favorite author, is one of my comfort films. anachronism, authorship, and audience response )

In short: don't really care for Tom Lefroy from the start and he never grows on me; the filmmakers try to promote Becoming Jane as a "different" kind of costume drama in a way that doesn't make sense to me; and I could probably forgive the film a lot more--goofy love story or not--if it seemed at all interested in portraying Austen as a young woman with a real, vested interest in being a writer, instead of someone who occasionally writes down some stuff, and then at some point undergoes some mysterious, love-fueled, mostly off-screen alchemy that turns her into the author of six brilliant novels.
tempestsarekind: (palm to palm is holy palmers' kiss)
I feel a bit like I’m going “Why does it hurt when I poke myself in the eye?,” but Becoming Jane is still irritating me. A few brief things, and then the major one:

1) I’m not sure why I’m supposed to like Tom Lefroy when he’s actually a bit mean. In the interest of full disclosure, I really like Laurence Fox because of Inspector Lewis, so I’m automatically sympathetic to this character, and this character is more my “type,” but still. His character, Wisley, and Jane are dancing and Wisley’s a terrible dancer--he botches a step and treads hard on Jane’s foot. Embarrassed, he apologizes, saying that he’s “mortified” and that he practices dancing, but it just doesn’t stick. Cut to Tom Lefroy looking down from a balcony (ah, the subtlety!--he’s actually looking down at the assembly!), laughing and smirking. And he’s supposed to be our hero--the guy who laughs at other people’s embarrassment? I get that he’s supposed to be fulfilling the Darcy role here and all (although he’s also Wickham, which is just weird), but seriously.

2) Something that isn’t really related to the Austenian aspects of the film: I could wish that filmmakers were less enamored of the idea that antagonism is the only form of romantic tension possible--but if you’re going to do it, then please, make sure that antagonism doesn’t merely stand in for attraction. Two people arguing doesn’t necessarily mean that they are secretly in love with each other. No, not even in Pride and Prejudice--because that’s not what actually happens in the novel. Elizabeth genuinely dislikes Darcy, what with the rudeness, and the ruining the happiness of a most beloved sister, and all. She comes to discover that she was misinformed about some of his behavior; he changes other aspects of his behavior; then she falls in love with him, realizing she didn’t know him as well as she thought. She’s *not* secretly in love with him the whole time. This does sometimes get read back into adaptations (*cough P&P3’s first proposal scene cough*), but it’s not really there in the novel. And it seems to me a lazy way to set up a relationship if it’s not done right--and it’s really not done right here, in my opinion.

3) The whole “we’re so different from all the other, stuffy costume dramas” meme is one that always irritates me, and here it’s compounded by the idea that the filmmakers are showing all the bits that we supposedly never get in Austen, but it’s particularly discordant in this case, when the film is so indebted to Austen’s novels and to adaptations of those novels. in which the film is a weird Austenian mash-up )

4) I needed--to be fair to this film--to examine why I find it so infuriating when Shakespeare in Love, which also plays fast and loose with the biography of a favorite author, is one of my comfort films. anachronism, authorship, and audience response )

In short: don't really care for Tom Lefroy from the start and he never grows on me; the filmmakers try to promote Becoming Jane as a "different" kind of costume drama in a way that doesn't make sense to me; and I could probably forgive the film a lot more--goofy love story or not--if it seemed at all interested in portraying Austen as a young woman with a real, vested interest in being a writer, instead of someone who occasionally writes down some stuff, and then at some point undergoes some mysterious, love-fueled, mostly off-screen alchemy that turns her into the author of six brilliant novels.
tempestsarekind: (austen snark is the best snark)
(Yes, I know there is a proper term for the period before the Regency. I just didn't like the phrase "Georgian mansplaining" as much.)

So, I have done it. Against my will and possibly against my better judgment, I have watched Becoming Jane. (It looks like my tutorial may be going ahead, in which case the first time I see the film probably shouldn't be in a screening with whatever students I may have. But I also got Bright Star and Last Chance Harvey from the library to soothe the pain afterward, and because I always watch British movies on July 4th.) I remain utterly perplexed as to why someone would choose to make a biopic of an author by sticking her novels into a blender, putting the resulting pulp up onto the screen, and then passing it off as the genuine article, but the members of the production team doubtless had their reasons.

I was about as infuriated as you'd expect me to be, particularly by the scene in which Tom Lefroy suggests that in order to be the equal of any male writer, little Jane really needs to widen her horizons and gain experience. (If you would be so obliging as to presume my meaning, and I think you will.) I can only assume Jane falls in love with him because he's willing to read her passages about avian sexytimes out of a nature book and recommend Tom Jones--which, just by the way, the actual, historical Jane Austen had already read when she met Tom Lefroy, which is why they were able to have conversations about it. I had to pause the DVD to vent--not the first time, nor the last--because it's a particularly insidious kind of male patronizing, the kind that pretends to be in the name of female liberation. I suspect I'm supposed to have come out of this scene thinking that "Tom Lefroy" really values Jane's mind, when all I can think about is how annoyed I am that he thinks he has to school her, and that the only way to be "equal" to a man is to write like one.

I also don't think I was supposed to come out of the movie comparing the insipid "trials" of their Jane with the real suffering of her sister Cassandra; or lamenting the doe-eyed blankness of Anne Hathaway when there is the perfectly lovely Anna Maxwell Martin right there being wasted in the same film; or wishing that--if they were going to invent this ridiculous palpitating romance pretty much out of whole cloth--they could have at least done it with a Tom Lefroy more like Laurence Fox's character (a figure totally invented, I can only assume, to have an overbearing aunt so that poor unimaginative Jane could have a model for Lady Catherine) than like James McAvoy's, whom I constantly wanted to flick between the eyes, no matter how nice he looks in a waistcoat. (And anyway, the real Tom Lefroy is supposed to have been fair-haired and tall.) Yet another of the problems with this film, you see, is that it fails as a romance as well as a biopic of Jane Austen. Granted, I tend to go for the serious and shy ones anyway, but the film's Tom Lefroy is basically just a grab-bag of rakish traits--ooh, he boxes; he has such a zest for life! he doesn't want to be a lawyer; he's such a free spirit!--and the film falls back on the old, old cliche by allowing Jane's apparent dislike of him stand in for the idea that secretly, she's really attracted to him because he "challenges" her, so that the actual falling-in-love process, if it happened, was not seen by me. I saw them maybe flirt a little, and then suddenly they were hiding in the shrubbery while Tom was declaring that he belonged to her heart and soul. (His heart and soul are apparently quite cheaply bought.)

And, perhaps strangest of all, the film forgets for whole scenes at a time that the reason one would make a biopic of Jane Austen at all is that she was a writer. I suppose this makes sense, actually, for the "romance" they want to tell--one in which dabbling, dreaming Jane writes things that are only suitable for family consumption, which Tom Lefroy dismisses as mere "feminine accomplishment," until she is inspired--or molded and fired, like clay in a kiln--by her passionate love for Tom Lefroy, which would go on to shape all the novels she would write. Of course, the generally proposed chronology of Austen's life suggests that she had already written the juvenilia, Lady Susan, and a draft of Elinor and Marianne by the time she spent that month in 1796 flirting with Tom Lefroy, but she can't possibly have written a draft of the novel that would go on to become Sense and Sensibility until she fell in love with him, so there's no hint of that. Similarly, there's no real suggestion that she reads anything until Tom Lefroy recommends Tom Jones, so the bit where they visit Ann Radcliffe comes out of absolutely nowhere (especially as I can only assume that a majority of the target audience may not know who that is). It could have been a useful move for the screenplay to have a previous scene where Jane reads, or admires, or heck, even knows about Ann Radcliffe...but I suppose that would be too much like saying that she didn't need some dude to come along and inspire her reading and writing. And we can't have that. Jane Austen was inspired by love, you guys! She wrote all her novels about the one who got away! The film makes the incredibly disagreeable move to "explain" why a "spinster" would choose to write about love and marriage--because she can give her characters the happy ending she never had.

Blech.
tempestsarekind: (austen snark is the best snark)
(Yes, I know there is a proper term for the period before the Regency. I just didn't like the phrase "Georgian mansplaining" as much.)

So, I have done it. Against my will and possibly against my better judgment, I have watched Becoming Jane. (It looks like my tutorial may be going ahead, in which case the first time I see the film probably shouldn't be in a screening with whatever students I may have. But I also got Bright Star and Last Chance Harvey from the library to soothe the pain afterward, and because I always watch British movies on July 4th.) I remain utterly perplexed as to why someone would choose to make a biopic of an author by sticking her novels into a blender, putting the resulting pulp up onto the screen, and then passing it off as the genuine article, but the members of the production team doubtless had their reasons.

I was about as infuriated as you'd expect me to be, particularly by the scene in which Tom Lefroy suggests that in order to be the equal of any male writer, little Jane really needs to widen her horizons and gain experience. (If you would be so obliging as to presume my meaning, and I think you will.) I can only assume Jane falls in love with him because he's willing to read her passages about avian sexytimes out of a nature book and recommend Tom Jones--which, just by the way, the actual, historical Jane Austen had already read when she met Tom Lefroy, which is why they were able to have conversations about it. I had to pause the DVD to vent--not the first time, nor the last--because it's a particularly insidious kind of male patronizing, the kind that pretends to be in the name of female liberation. I suspect I'm supposed to have come out of this scene thinking that "Tom Lefroy" really values Jane's mind, when all I can think about is how annoyed I am that he thinks he has to school her, and that the only way to be "equal" to a man is to write like one.

I also don't think I was supposed to come out of the movie comparing the insipid "trials" of their Jane with the real suffering of her sister Cassandra; or lamenting the doe-eyed blankness of Anne Hathaway when there is the perfectly lovely Anna Maxwell Martin right there being wasted in the same film; or wishing that--if they were going to invent this ridiculous palpitating romance pretty much out of whole cloth--they could have at least done it with a Tom Lefroy more like Laurence Fox's character (a figure totally invented, I can only assume, to have an overbearing aunt so that poor unimaginative Jane could have a model for Lady Catherine) than like James McAvoy's, whom I constantly wanted to flick between the eyes, no matter how nice he looks in a waistcoat. (And anyway, the real Tom Lefroy is supposed to have been fair-haired and tall.) Yet another of the problems with this film, you see, is that it fails as a romance as well as a biopic of Jane Austen. Granted, I tend to go for the serious and shy ones anyway, but the film's Tom Lefroy is basically just a grab-bag of rakish traits--ooh, he boxes; he has such a zest for life! he doesn't want to be a lawyer; he's such a free spirit!--and the film falls back on the old, old cliche by allowing Jane's apparent dislike of him stand in for the idea that secretly, she's really attracted to him because he "challenges" her, so that the actual falling-in-love process, if it happened, was not seen by me. I saw them maybe flirt a little, and then suddenly they were hiding in the shrubbery while Tom was declaring that he belonged to her heart and soul. (His heart and soul are apparently quite cheaply bought.)

And, perhaps strangest of all, the film forgets for whole scenes at a time that the reason one would make a biopic of Jane Austen at all is that she was a writer. I suppose this makes sense, actually, for the "romance" they want to tell--one in which dabbling, dreaming Jane writes things that are only suitable for family consumption, which Tom Lefroy dismisses as mere "feminine accomplishment," until she is inspired--or molded and fired, like clay in a kiln--by her passionate love for Tom Lefroy, which would go on to shape all the novels she would write. Of course, the generally proposed chronology of Austen's life suggests that she had already written the juvenilia, Lady Susan, and a draft of Elinor and Marianne by the time she spent that month in 1796 flirting with Tom Lefroy, but she can't possibly have written a draft of the novel that would go on to become Sense and Sensibility until she fell in love with him, so there's no hint of that. Similarly, there's no real suggestion that she reads anything until Tom Lefroy recommends Tom Jones, so the bit where they visit Ann Radcliffe comes out of absolutely nowhere (especially as I can only assume that a majority of the target audience may not know who that is). It could have been a useful move for the screenplay to have a previous scene where Jane reads, or admires, or heck, even knows about Ann Radcliffe...but I suppose that would be too much like saying that she didn't need some dude to come along and inspire her reading and writing. And we can't have that. Jane Austen was inspired by love, you guys! She wrote all her novels about the one who got away! The film makes the incredibly disagreeable move to "explain" why a "spinster" would choose to write about love and marriage--because she can give her characters the happy ending she never had.

Blech.
tempestsarekind: (very few dates in this history)
As Lost in Austen inches ever closer, I'd really like to know:

There seems to be an unquenchable desire for all things adaptation. Or, at the very least, they get greenlit with some regularity. And then everyone complains about how we just *had* a bunch of Austen adaptations (or adaptations in general), so surely we don't need any more of them, but producers *will* insist on making them. So why don't we see more historical drama not based on novels (either on TV or on film)? Obviously there is some, but it seems to be a very under-used method of satisfying the supposed public appetite for bonnets without having to struggle to make the 'same old stories' fresh again.

I can't think of any substantial differences in cost. History is still public domain; while I suppose it might take more time to write the initial script than it would to adapt an already-written novel, one would still have to pay the writers anyway; and casting, location, costumes, etc. shouldn't be any different for a production set in the Regency but not based on an Austen novel.

More crucially, is there really that big a difference in potential audience? All of the Austen fans I know would gladly watch a Regency-but-not-Austen film (and would probably approach it with far less trepidation!). People who have only watched adaptations of Austen novels without ever reading the books aren't watching them out of Austen loyalty, so presumably they'd also watch a Regency film as well (or at least one that contained the elements they enjoyed in those adaptations). And let's face it, the audience for Becoming Jane was NOT those of us who had a serious stake in Austen.

The only problem I can really see is marketing, and if you associated the production with Austen often enough (which happens with non-Austen adaptations *anyway*--see the reviews for Cranford), surely that would work?

Because, actually, I would potentially watch a "Regency Life on Mars," as Lost in Austen is being described, but I have no interest in someone actually being transported *into* Pride and Prejudice (and Elizabeth being transported into the modern day, which breaks my brain a little bit. I mean, she *is* fictional), because I suspect it would just tick me off. I may be weird in that, though--I've never had any desire to read sequels to Austen's novels, either. Still, I don't see why Austen actually needs to be involved for this project to work. It seems perfectly possible to crassly capitalize on this period of Austen-mania without invoking Austen herself.

The ITV website for Lost in Austen:
http://www.itv.com/Drama/perioddrama/LostInAusten/default.html

In mildly related news, the new cover for the Oxford reprint of Northanger Abbey does seem to miss the point a bit:
http://www.oup.com/uk/catalogue/?ci=9780199535545
tempestsarekind: (very few dates in this history)
As Lost in Austen inches ever closer, I'd really like to know:

There seems to be an unquenchable desire for all things adaptation. Or, at the very least, they get greenlit with some regularity. And then everyone complains about how we just *had* a bunch of Austen adaptations (or adaptations in general), so surely we don't need any more of them, but producers *will* insist on making them. So why don't we see more historical drama not based on novels (either on TV or on film)? Obviously there is some, but it seems to be a very under-used method of satisfying the supposed public appetite for bonnets without having to struggle to make the 'same old stories' fresh again.

I can't think of any substantial differences in cost. History is still public domain; while I suppose it might take more time to write the initial script than it would to adapt an already-written novel, one would still have to pay the writers anyway; and casting, location, costumes, etc. shouldn't be any different for a production set in the Regency but not based on an Austen novel.

More crucially, is there really that big a difference in potential audience? All of the Austen fans I know would gladly watch a Regency-but-not-Austen film (and would probably approach it with far less trepidation!). People who have only watched adaptations of Austen novels without ever reading the books aren't watching them out of Austen loyalty, so presumably they'd also watch a Regency film as well (or at least one that contained the elements they enjoyed in those adaptations). And let's face it, the audience for Becoming Jane was NOT those of us who had a serious stake in Austen.

The only problem I can really see is marketing, and if you associated the production with Austen often enough (which happens with non-Austen adaptations *anyway*--see the reviews for Cranford), surely that would work?

Because, actually, I would potentially watch a "Regency Life on Mars," as Lost in Austen is being described, but I have no interest in someone actually being transported *into* Pride and Prejudice (and Elizabeth being transported into the modern day, which breaks my brain a little bit. I mean, she *is* fictional), because I suspect it would just tick me off. I may be weird in that, though--I've never had any desire to read sequels to Austen's novels, either. Still, I don't see why Austen actually needs to be involved for this project to work. It seems perfectly possible to crassly capitalize on this period of Austen-mania without invoking Austen herself.

The ITV website for Lost in Austen:
http://www.itv.com/Drama/perioddrama/LostInAusten/default.html

In mildly related news, the new cover for the Oxford reprint of Northanger Abbey does seem to miss the point a bit:
http://www.oup.com/uk/catalogue/?ci=9780199535545
tempestsarekind: (austen)
I've had several conversations with people over the last few days where the person goes, "Hey, have you heard of this movie about Jane Austen...?" And then I usually laugh in a slightly hysterical fashion for a few seconds until I go, "Oh, wait, you're *serious*!" I have had so many conversations with so many people about the Bad Idea that is Becoming Jane that it amazes me that there are still members of my acquaintance who haven't been forced to hear it. So by the time the film came out, I felt tapped, really.

but there's still room for one more rant )

In other distressing Austen news: I saw the PBS trailer for the "Jane Austen Season" in 2008. I know I'm the last person left on the planet who hasn't seen the ITV adaptations, but I'm a bit worried about Northanger Abbey now. (I've already written Mansfield Park off as a lost cause. I like Billie Piper as much as the next person, but Fanny Price is not an energetic, forthright tomboy! She just isn't! And if you don't like Fanny Price, if you're not willing to be fair to who she is, then why even bother making MP?) Anyway. What is with those imagined Gothic scenes? And I have to say, much as I am still looking forward to JJ Feild, I have to admit that I am a little disappointed in a Henry Tilney who would say something like "Perhaps it is possible to read too many novels." No way! Not Mister "Do not imagine you can cope with me in a knowledge of Julias and Louisas"! It's not what you read, or how much you read of it; it's *how* you read. And Henry, who mocks the conventions of the Gothic with such amusement, who is still rational despite the "hundreds and hundreds" of novels he's read, would know that.

But. I did learn that Olivia Williams has been cast as Austen in this biopic called "Miss Austen Regrets" that's to air at the same time as the rest of the season, and that's something. (Better than Anne Hathaway!) Who knows what the story will be like, but I thought Olivia Williams was already quite good as one Jane--as Jane Fairfax--so it'll be interesting to see what she does with another.
tempestsarekind: (austen)
I've had several conversations with people over the last few days where the person goes, "Hey, have you heard of this movie about Jane Austen...?" And then I usually laugh in a slightly hysterical fashion for a few seconds until I go, "Oh, wait, you're *serious*!" I have had so many conversations with so many people about the Bad Idea that is Becoming Jane that it amazes me that there are still members of my acquaintance who haven't been forced to hear it. So by the time the film came out, I felt tapped, really.

but there's still room for one more rant )

In other distressing Austen news: I saw the PBS trailer for the "Jane Austen Season" in 2008. I know I'm the last person left on the planet who hasn't seen the ITV adaptations, but I'm a bit worried about Northanger Abbey now. (I've already written Mansfield Park off as a lost cause. I like Billie Piper as much as the next person, but Fanny Price is not an energetic, forthright tomboy! She just isn't! And if you don't like Fanny Price, if you're not willing to be fair to who she is, then why even bother making MP?) Anyway. What is with those imagined Gothic scenes? And I have to say, much as I am still looking forward to JJ Feild, I have to admit that I am a little disappointed in a Henry Tilney who would say something like "Perhaps it is possible to read too many novels." No way! Not Mister "Do not imagine you can cope with me in a knowledge of Julias and Louisas"! It's not what you read, or how much you read of it; it's *how* you read. And Henry, who mocks the conventions of the Gothic with such amusement, who is still rational despite the "hundreds and hundreds" of novels he's read, would know that.

But. I did learn that Olivia Williams has been cast as Austen in this biopic called "Miss Austen Regrets" that's to air at the same time as the rest of the season, and that's something. (Better than Anne Hathaway!) Who knows what the story will be like, but I thought Olivia Williams was already quite good as one Jane--as Jane Fairfax--so it'll be interesting to see what she does with another.
tempestsarekind: (austen)
It is probably far too early to have this much bottled-up rage toward the makers of Becoming Jane, seeing as the film hasn't even come out yet. But everything I read about this film makes me angrier. Today's perusal of AustenBlog brought a long article on the film to my attention, and I just... hate. Everyone quoted in the article except James McAvoy, and Deirdre Le Faye of course, for speaking common sense about what's actually in Austen's letters about Lefroy, and what it is that authors do (i.e., they do NOT transcribe directly from their own lives).

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/arts/main.jhtml?xml=/arts/2007/02/17/smjane117.xml&page=1

And what is up with these male directors talking about how they never really liked Austen while promoting their (not really) Austen-based films? (Yes, I am looking at you, Joe Wright. Do not think that my Becoming Jane anger has made me any more forgiving of your wretched attempt at Pride and Prejudice.) Do they think this wins them points with boys or something?

Argh.
tempestsarekind: (austen)
It is probably far too early to have this much bottled-up rage toward the makers of Becoming Jane, seeing as the film hasn't even come out yet. But everything I read about this film makes me angrier. Today's perusal of AustenBlog brought a long article on the film to my attention, and I just... hate. Everyone quoted in the article except James McAvoy, and Deirdre Le Faye of course, for speaking common sense about what's actually in Austen's letters about Lefroy, and what it is that authors do (i.e., they do NOT transcribe directly from their own lives).

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/arts/main.jhtml?xml=/arts/2007/02/17/smjane117.xml&page=1

And what is up with these male directors talking about how they never really liked Austen while promoting their (not really) Austen-based films? (Yes, I am looking at you, Joe Wright. Do not think that my Becoming Jane anger has made me any more forgiving of your wretched attempt at Pride and Prejudice.) Do they think this wins them points with boys or something?

Argh.

Profile

tempestsarekind: (Default)
tempestsarekind

July 2017

S M T W T F S
      1
2345678
91011 12 13 1415
16171819 202122
23 242526272829
3031     

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Jul. 27th, 2017 04:47 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios