Brideshead Revisited

[Screenshot]Brideshead Revisited may be a difficult work to bring to the screen, as it’s short on actual action and long on psychology. The primary characters in the story are so restrained that it’s only through written narratives that their dramas play out. Screenwriters rush in where angels fear to tread, however, so we get a literal adaptation which, despite its flaws, msotly works. Little can be said against the star-studded cast wh did their best with what they had: it’s hard to make Julia Flyte’s vicillations and ruminations on Catholicism come out in a way that keeps the film moving, although Hayley Atwell puts in a creditable effort. The early shunting of Sebastian aside as the central Flyte in favor of Julia seems a bit of a mistake, since Sebastian is definitely the more interesting of the two siblings with the meatier role. Pushing Sebastian aside also makes the film an awful lot less ambiguously gay than the book was (and in my estimation, the sexual tension was an element of the book which contributed considerably to its drama).

As regards cinematic concerns beond the script and pacing, Brideshead comes out in a pretty good light. I think it was on-location shooting, because the castles and universities and suchlike have all the right feel.

Anyways, I’m curious if anyone can do Brideshead better. This adaptation is passionless and drags a mite, but I can’t really see how it could be otherwise.

See also: IMDB, Wikipedia.


About Jake
I'm a mathematics professor at the University of Louisville, and a geek.

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