Monday Movie News!

   

One of my all-time favourite authors is F. Scott Fitzgerald, so you can imagine my surprise and delight when I found out that two of his novels will be hitting the big screen within the next few years.  Both movies will be starring Keira Knightly, one of my favourite actresses.

Movie #1: The Beautiful and the Damned

I have not read this novel yet. The movie is set to release January 1, 2011, so maybe I’ll ask for this book for Christmas.

This novel is usually described as a ‘biography’ of Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda, and their fast life in the 20’s. In this second novel by Fitzgerald,  a glamorous and doomed marriage is portrayed in the decadent high society of New York City. The novel introduces us to the pleasure-seeking Anthony and his beautiful, vain, and shallow golden girl just after their marriage, when-believing a large inheritance to be imminent-they begin living well beyond their means.

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Movie #2: Tender is the Night

It is rumored that Keira Knightly will also be appearing in another Fitzgerald remake as Nicole Diver. Her leading man is speculated to be Matt Damon (playing Dick Diver). I have read this book already, and started re-reading it again since the last time I read it I was 12,but I can say it is one of my all time favorites. Set on the French Riviera in the late 1920s, Tender Is the Night is the tragic romance of the young actress Rosemary Hoyt and the stylish American couple Dick and Nicole Diver. A brilliant young psychiatrist at the time of his marriage, Dick is both husband and doctor to Nicole, whose wealth goads him into a lifestyle not his own, and whose growing strength highlights Dick’s harrowing demise. The movie is set to release some time in 2012.

With having just passed our own mini version of the 1930’s crash, could popularity be turning to the 1920’s as a parallel reference? The rich and famous in the 1920’s lived too extravagantly, spending money that wasn’t their own (hello credit), which was a cause of the crash in the stock market.  I love the jazz age and the glamour of the 1920’s, and I am so happy that entertainment it focusing around this beautiful era.

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Judge a book by it’s cover

Private Lives of Pippa Lee by Rebecca Miller

From the back cover: Pippa Lee is the devoted wife of the brilliant New York publisher Herb Lee. Now in his 80s, Herb is finally retired and ready to make a pre-emptive strike against his decrepitude by moving with his wife from Gramercy Park to the Marigold Village retirement community.

Pippa, 30 years younger than Herb, attempts to settle gracefully into life at Marigold Village, but she soon finds herself unravelling: walking, chain-smoking, even driving, in her sleep. Drawn to the troubled son of a neighbour. Pippa wonders if she is having a nervous breakdown, or if cracks are beginning to show in the veneer she has so carefully constructed.

For Pippa hasn’t always been a sophisticated and beatific wife and parent. She has been daughter to a Dexedrine-addicted mother, Lolita to a teacher, model for S&M lesbian erotica, runaway, drug addict, free spirit and secret mistress all before seemingly finding love and security in a family of her own.

Now, that identity, too, is coming apart.
In this absorbing, fearless novel, writer Rebecca Miller reveals how many lives can exist within one person and how leaving them behind is nearly impossible.

My Review: After staring at this cover for many weeks in the bookstore, luck would have it that the publisher (thank you HarperCollins) sent my book store an ARC.

In this day of customer testing, I feel you really can judge a book by it’s cover.

Just by looking at it, I thought this would be a book about a troubled girl, who gets into a lot of trouble, but of course, has fun along the way.

I was right in my assessment, but was a little disappointed with the flow of the novel.  It wasn’t exactly a page turner, but I did fall in love with Pippa.

Then the movie came out…

Movie:

Beautifully directed by the author, Rebecca Miller, I have to say I did enjoy the movie better than the book (which is an extreme rarity for me). The movie was everything I thought the book would be. More visual imagery and stunning costumes and vistas, this is a great movie to watch on a rainy day.

Original cover: yikes, not my cup of tea

Movie book cover: Seemingly boring compared to the original.

From the Page to the Life’s Stage: 6

6:

Down the Rabbit Hole…

In honor of Tim Burton’s  Alice in Wonderland, I have chosen 6 inspired picks:

1. Beautiful teacup ring

2. Book: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, illustrated by Camilla Rose Garcia and found at Urban Outfitter:

3. Alice In Wonderland Tea Party Pillowcase Set:

4. We’re all mad here – ring– Chershire cat quote.

5. Flower Garden Inspired Swarovski Necklace

6. National Ballet of Canada: Alice in Wonderland

Let me know what your favorite items are!

My Top 10 Favourite Classical Movies

 I’m addicted to movies that are categorized as historical fiction! Any time one comes out in the theatre I run out to see it and I am constantly on the look out for ones that were released in the past. Unfortunately though, these types of movies only play in one theatre out of my whole area (shows just how popular they are).

1. Pride & Prejudice (Directed by Joe Wright)

 2. Marie Antoinette (Directed by Sofia Coppola)

 3. Elizabeth (Directed by Shekhar Kapur)

4. Emma (Directed by Diarmuid Lawrence) {sorry Gwyneth Paltrow, but the plot of this one is more true to the novel!}

5. Anna & the King (Directed by Andy Tennant)

6. Ever After (Directed by Andy Tennant)

7. Little Women (Directed by Gillian Armstrong)

8. Chocolat (Directed by Lasse Hallström)

9. Being Julia (Directed by István Szabó)

10. A Knight’s Tale (Directed by Brian Helgeland)

Here is a great list showing all the historical movies ever made and how much money each of them has made: click here

Tell me what your favourite historical fiction movie is!

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald

(click on this picture to get full size and use as your desktop background!)

First Impressions: Fitzgerald’s most famous novel, The Great Gatsby, was first published in 1925 (85 years ago!). The first time I tried to read this book (when I was 12) I could not get through it. Later I learn’t in a Modernism class that this was because its structure attempts to diverge from the classic structure of a novel. However, once I learnt the literary ways of the 1920’s, the book became a depiction of everything I thought the roaring twenties to be.  Not only did it define an iconic time in history, it was well written and is constantly assigned in school classrooms around the world. This book is short, and its structure is as tight as a short story: a definite recommend to read!

Short Plot Summary: This novel captures the disillusion of post-war America and the moral failure of a society obsessed with wealth and status. It chronicles Gatsby’s tragic pursuit of the American Dream, chronicalling the tale of reality vs. illusion.

Something to think about:
–         F in F. Scott Fitzgerald stands for Francis (born September 24, 1896). Francis was a name taken from his relative, Francis Scott Key, who wrote, “Star Spangled Banner.”
–         Fitzgerald’s life is closely paralleled to Gatsby’s.  He achieves the American dream, becomes engrossed in parties and decadence, marries a beautiful woman who ruins him, and dies an early death (heart attack at the age of 44).

Adaptations:
Movies
–  The Great Gatsby (1926), directed by Herbert Brenon (have not seen this one yet, anyone have advice of where to watch, let me know!)
The Great Gatsby (1949), directed by Elliott Nugent (have not seen this one
either, if anyone has advice of where to watch, let me know!)
The Great Gatsby (1974), directed by Jack Clayton (stays true to plot and
Narrative; definite recommended watch if you loved the book).


The Great Gatsby (2000), directed by Robert Markowitz (made for TV).