Monday, 5 April 2010

Literary Pursuits

One of the great things about being a naturally voracious reader is that when I have to do reading for University I’m usually way ahead of the game. Case in point, the book we’re currently studying is Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler. It’s one of the six plays we’re doing this semester (the others: Oedipus Rex, Othello, Death of a Salesman, Ti-Jean & His Brothers, Moon On a Rainbow Shawl). And like so many books, I read it way before I could even grasp the actual themes. Nevertheless, even though I know it’s wrong, I still find Hedda to be hilarious (inadvertently, of course). Next to Shakespeare’s shrewish Katherina and Tennessee’s Blanche Dubois few female roles thrill me as much as Ms. Gabler. I’m trying to get my hands on the Glenda Jackson film version. I still consider it the best in her career of illustrious performances. Shouldn’t she have won the Oscar that year? I wonder if it’s too soon for a remake…. Cate Blanchett seems like an obvious choice, but I suppose she’d be too old…what do you think?
Have you been doing any significant reading recently (academic or secular)? Have you read Hedda? Who’d you cast in a remake? Sound off below.


Robert said...

I'm working on Howards End, which I am in love with, and I haven't seen the movie yet - I'm holding out until I finish the book!

TomS said...

I sorely miss Glenda Jackson on screen. She had a most strong and sensuous voice, and delivered her lines like a bullet.

I alwasy said to myself that Kate Blanchett would be a worthy successor to Ms. Jackson! Now if she would just take better roles...

Reading Francine Prose's "A Sicilian Odyssey", Ted Kennedy's memoirs, my Italian textbook, and re-reading Vollmann's "Europe Central."

Simon said...

I'm on Sophie's World, then Fortress of Solitude. And I'm always flipping through Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, does that count?

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

robert i adore howards end...the book and the film, but i love e. m. forster and ditto for merchant/ivory. keep me posted on when you see the film.

tom s. i LOVED her voice.

re to italian text: i'm always jealous of people who have aptitude for languages. eg, i love french, but i'm just no good.

simon "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead" yeah it counts i suppose :)

Runs Like A Gay said...

I've just finished Bitter Eden, hard work but worth it. Am deciding between two books I've started before but never made it to the end (and both far too well known for me to admit to what they are).

I think it's OK to find Ibsen funny like Chekhov he puts a mirror to the absurdities of society which can either make you rant and wail about it's inequalities or laugh about the ways the characters deal with the small things.

I'm not sure the time is right for a remake - Ibsen's drab sttings and dialogue heavy plays would be impossible to shift in today's market. The few stage to screen adapts we're getting at the moment do seem to revolve around major incidents (child abuse, major characters dying etc.)