Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Bright Star

Bright Star is an aesthetically perfect film. I love how Jane Campion used the natural colours of the seasons and landscape to frame every scene and to enhance the emotions of the characters so that the audience was able to experience the same feelings. Some shots were just too beautiful for words, especially the ones in the forest and field of flowers. My two favourite scenes in a cinematic sense were the butterfly room and the bleak black snow covered woods at the end.
The first scene made me squee! An extreme close up of Fanny hand stitching a ruffled collar to her dress. There are numerous other extreme close ups of everyday objects that I just wanted to take pictures of them to share on Flickr.
And the costumes were breathtaking. So many colours and little details to identify with, even though no one wears that style of clothing any more on a daily basis. And you could see the period shoes and boots, something that's never done in Jane Austen adaptations.
I found it really interesting that Jane Campion told the story from Fanny Brawne's perspective, since Keats had her letters to him burned after his death (a truly great loss). I also liked how she showed Fanny's interest in fashion and sewing in order to show that she was creative too.
What I didn't like was the portrayal of Keats. When I heard that a film about Keats' life was being made, I got so excited because there aren't any good films about the Romantic Poets. Keats is just awesome (I mean that in both the word's original meaning and the current slang form). To have written some of the greatest poems in the history of literature from the age of 19 to his death at 25 is both an unsurpassed legacy and a terrible loss as to he had yet to write. I found that Cammpion undermined his awesomeness. In the film, Keats remained an undeveloped character. We do not see much of his personality nor his process of writing. And what was forgotten in the film is that Keats knew that he would become consumptive and die after watching his mother and brother die from it. That is why he abandoned his education in order to write poetry. In the film, it's shown that he didn't know of his fate until he coughed up blood one night. And we don't see just how ill he was as the actor only looks like he has a bad cold at the height of his illness. I also objected to the reading of some of his poems at the incorrect times or mood of the scene. And the actor was too tall, Keats was just over 5 feet tall.

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