Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Wuthering Heights

Well, the farmer and I went to the cinema to see Wuthering Heights last evening. We are so lucky to have the Station Complex at Richmond, with its artisan shops, its delightful cafe and its two cinema screens, each seating one hundred people.

On Tuesdays there are three screenings on Screen 1 - one at 1.30pm for senior citizens (£4.50 entry), one at 5pm and another at 8 pm. We usually go to the 5pm screening, leaving home at 3.30 for the twenty minute drive, parking (not always easy), ordering a sandwich tea and two pots of tea and then sitting relaxing for an hour before wandering into the cinema. We did this yesterday and sat chatting to a most interesting man on the next table, so it was a really pleasant hour. When we got into the cinema there were only 17 people in the audience, but once the lights were out this didn't matter, except that the lady behind me spent a large part of the film trying to open sweet papers quietly about a yard from my hearing aid!

As to the film, well the jury is out. I am hoping that somebody who reads this has seen it, so that we can discuss it in a bit of detail. It is many years since I read the book and I purposely didn't read it again before last night, although of course I know the story - don't we all.

Although it is set on those bleak Yorkshire Moors above the Bronte village of Howarth, it was actually filmed in Upper Swaledale - quite near to where we live, so that the scenery was in many ways familiar territory.

Some things it got over very well - the primitiveness of existence up there, the cold and the mud in Winter, and - of course - the central 'love' story. But there was very little dialogue and an awful lot of shots showing bleak moorland, grey sky, branches tapping on windows, pouring rain and howling winds. Everyone seemed to be wet through and frozen most of the time and yet, miraculously, they would be dry inside moments later.

It has occupied my thinking a large part of today - perhaps that is a plus too, but really I don't think it was all that gripping. Anyone out there like to add a comment?


Heather said...

I haven't seen it Pat, and still remember the version with Laurence Olivier!! I'm sure there will be someone with whom you can have a good discussion of the film.
Isn't it infuriating that some people can't enjoy their viewing without a bag of noisy sweets?

mrsnesbitt said...

Will have to totter off for a viewing - sweet papers eh? Why do they sell them in cinemas - and popcorn - bah humbug! Good job I dont get out much lol!

MorningAJ said...

I did Wuthering Heights for O level. I've heard nothing good about the film. I think I'll give it a miss - even if you do get to see lots of gorgeous Yorkshire scenery.

Elizabeth said...

We saw part of one on TV here recently --and Robert liked it in spite of it being a 'costume drama'.
However it was new-ish --and not the Laurence Olivier one --so not sure if it was the same version you saw....
so pointless to discuss really.
It was a super-duper book!

Mimi Foxmorton said...


Just happened to notice this.
Are you refering to the new-new version? I didn't know it was out yet. How cool.

I adore Heathcliff and love what Ralph FIennes did with it so.......this new one will have to go a way to please me.

Will check it out and come back and comment.



Gerry Snape said...

I only know that Ralph Fiennes is in it...will keep my ears open for others comments on it. love the fact that the tea was more interesting than the film... with the chatty man!!

George said...

I assume that this is a new version. Regardless of the quality of the film, I think I would enjoy it for the simple pleasure of seeing the great landscapes in which it was filmed.

Cloudia said...

Haven't seen it, sorry.

Aloha from Honolulu

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rkbsnana said...

Oh, goodness. Am I behind or what?
I loved the (apparently) original primarily because of the love story. Never knew there was one with Ralph Fiennes. I must find it.
And now there is a current one?

ChrisJ said...

Haven't seen it, Weaver. Don't know if it's out over here yet, but I'd like to see it and valuate it at least.

thousandflower said...

I think I;ll have to make a point of seeing it just for its views of Swaledale. I've been there twice, both times clear up to the western end and would love to see it again even as a movie background.

Golden West said...

The 2009 Masterpiece Classic version, made for television, is my all-time favorite. Tom Hardy gets the smoldering Heathcliff just right, the production values are top notch - do see if if you get a chance!

The Weaver of Grass said...

This was not the Ralph Fiennes version - I would have been raving about that!!

Thannks for the comments - still nobody who has actually seen the film.

Titus said...

Me neither Weaver. The Review Show, to the best of my memory, was preoccupied with how the film had stripped out all the words - and the fact that there was no music but a lot of natural sound.

Ally said...

saw it yesterday in Richmond at the 1.30 senior showing. Adore the Bronte sisters, my horse is named Bronte!, and was so looking forward to the film. I found it tedious, offensive, violent and couldn't wait for it to finish. In fact I would have walked out had it not disturbed others watching. Shot with a hand held camera, rain and sun spots on the lens, out of focus - poor acting, poor characterisation. The scenery was great but the only thing that truly saved the afternoon was my Cadbury's king size Fruit and Nut bar!!!

Ally said...

Went to see this at the 1.30 showing at Richmond yesterday and found it tedious, offensive and very violent. Love the Brontes, my horse is named Bronte!, and was so looking forward to it but could have walked out. Didn't expect to see sheep having throat cut, hare having neck broken and dogs being hung, most realistically. The film was shot with hand held cameras, sun and rain spots on the lenses, out of focus and irritating. Poor acting, very wooden, poor characterisation and quite honestly the only thing I enjoyed was my Cadbury's Fruit and Nut Bar! Oh, and the shots of Swaledale! Not for the faint hearted or the easily bored ...