Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Movies & Poets

Just enjoyed a lovely visit from my absolutely better half's younger brother & his significant other. Relaxed & laid back, everyone just needed down time so DVDs were the best entertainment. I hauled out our films about poets + one policeman: From Hell, the story of the search for Jack the Ripper. A lot of research behind the story but the conclusion was just one of many possibles. Very convincing though. We didn't have time for The Raven but it's a big favorite of mine. Nobody knows how Edgar Allan Poe died & the movie's solution is not the least bit convincing, but suspenseful good fun. Somewhere in the literary oversoul Poe is high-fiving all those minor writers who will never be portrayed by John Cusack.
   We saw Finding Neverland too, where J.M. Barrie, who wrote Peter Pan, takes the beauteous form of Johnny Depp. (A bit of a switch for Depp from the psychic cop in From Hell.) Both Edgar Allan Poe & J.M. Barrie were - by our standards - little squirts. Johnny Depp is middle sized, John Cusack very tall dark & handsome. (Off the subject - Michelangelo was an even littler squirt & I have never forgiven 20th Century Fox - Hollywood at its worst - for casting that  big dumb moose Charlton Heston to play him in The Agony & the Ecstasy in 1965.) Depp & Cusack are terrific as Barrie & Poe. So is Ben Whishaw as John Keats in Bright Star. He actually looks a bit like  Keats & is properly small, pale & delicate. Who else could you cast in that role? He reads the poetry beautifully too. Made me want to read it all again. I haven't seen Howl, but more of same - James Franco as the young Allen Ginsberg. Maybe Ginsberg was handsome when young, but I remember him as fat & hairy; gross-looking, no matter what you thought of his poetry. James Franco looks yummier than spaghetti carbonara & soulful as well.
You know, I really love it that poets & writers get movies made about them with gorgeous intelligent hunks leading the cast. High five, Edgar; 2 thumbs up, J.M.; ooooh John; what a hoot, Allen! There are all sorts of heroes & now even movie studios have figured it out. Who's next? I suggest Eric Bana as James Joyce in The Dubliner. What a cool mix of dialects. I can hardly wait.

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