Last week I had fever. Not viral or bacterial , but an actor fever ,which I seem to suffer from,now in my forties. As my friend S. says ,we have been such good girls in our med.school,in our twenties,we had absolutely no time for crushes. Now in our forties, it is totally pardonable ,to develop a crush on an utterly handsome and very much unattainable person.
So this was a ‘Colin Firth’ fever. It developed after watching the BBC drama Pride and Prejudice. Now if you think I am going to describe my ailment in detail , you couldn't be more wrong. But still , I can't help saying this much -. I watched 5 movies in 4 days in addition to P& P !
P & P was really good , I think it was the best adaptation amongst all that I saw. CF was very good and so was Jennifer Ehle who played Elizabeth Bennet. She was the most convincing of all Lizzies : beautiful,poised,mature. (The adaptations of P & P that I watched are-
1.Aishwarya Rai’s Bride and Prejudice - beautiful but stony lead pair and totally embarrassing song and dance sequences.
2. Keira Knightley's movie P&P( 2005) : This was good but Keira as Elizabeth did not fit in spite of good acting. Both Darcy and Lizzie looked much too young and there were slight modifications in some scenes in the book. But still , it was a good movie.
3. Trishna - This was a serial aired on D.D. when I was in school. It was based on P&P . It was very popular and I loved it very much then. But thinking back, I knew the lead actor (Tarun Dhanrajgir ) was quite expressionless. Sangeeta Handa , who was Lizzie ( I don't remember her Indianized name) was loud and looked terrible while crying. Only actor who became slightly famous was Kaushalya/Kittu Gidwani playing Indian Lydia. Oh yes..Irshad Hashmi playing Mr.Collins was good ,if not better ,than the English ones. )
After watching the movie ,I got the book from the library the next day and tried matching it scene by scene. The 1995 BBC drama was quite faithful even though the most famous lake scene was an addendum. I am ashamed to say, I preferred watching it than reading !
Anyway, that set me on a journey of watching all Colin Firth movies. I watched
Importance of being Earnest : I have always loved Oscar Wilde and I think this play had the most witty dialogues of all. It is probably the most famous of all the plays of Wilde. Again ,I was very impressed with Colin Firth who played ‘Earnest ‘
Bridget Jones's Diary ,part 1,2 & 3 : Well, I am not proud of watching these movies. But remember ? I had high fever then ! They are entertaining and pointless. But CF is divine, even in the last part ,where he looks and plays an older Mr.Darcy. Apparently, CF did these movies,so that he could play a slightly mocking caricature of perfect english gentleman - Mr.Darcy. But then, Colin is always Colin.( I always think of him as Colin. My fantasies ,however,are utterly innocuous. I am traveling in a plane with him and I tell him how much I admired him in his movie The King's speech….)
Love actually : Good concept : love in life of differnt people ,whose stories unfold at the same time. CF looked very very handsome. But Hugh Grant as the Prime minister looked even better and his role was meatier,too.
The King’s speech : This was the best of his movies that I saw. The struggle of King George the sixth,to fight his speech impairment was powerfully played by Colin Firth. Initial ‘Kingliness ‘, feeling of helplessness, struggle,anger and ultimate triumph were utterly convincing. He even won an Oscar for this role.
A single man : This is the movie I want to watch but I can not find anywhere. I have seen a few scenes on youtube and they really are powerful. It is the story of a gay professor , whose partner has died in a car accident. He has lost his ability to feel and is so utterly desolate that he decides to end his life.It is his journey on the last day of his life where he experiences everything very intensly. I hope I would be able to watch this movie sometime in future.
Magic in moonlight : This one is available on youtube but I did not like it. Colin as a cynical magician did not appeal to me and I did not like the lead actress Emma Stone.
So….that is that….my film journey last week….all thanks to Mr.Darcy….
NB : There was a non CF film I saw last week, and I loved it very much. It was called ‘Midnight in Paris’. I did not know any of the actors ,but it was a Woody Allen film. Very interesting concept : a Hollywood screenwriter,in process of writing his first novel visits Paris. He loves the city and feels it would have been even more charming in 1920s. By the stroke of midnight, he is transported to the 20s,where he meets,Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway…. Unusual and writerly fantasy !