Saturday, May 20, 2017

A Quiet Passion

I finally got to see the Emily Dickinson movie. It was enjoyable, with funny banter and lots of witty women. However, I was surprised that the movie focused so much on Emily's sister Vinnie instead of her sister-in-law Susan Gilbert. She was a close friend and lived next-door, and Emily wrote her tons of letters; she's the only close confidante I remember from reading a biography of Emily years ago. Susan Gilbert is barely in the movie, only having a couple of scenes, while the movie focuses instead on Miss Buffam as an outrageous friend who delights the Dickinson sisters. Plus the movie talks much about Austin's affair with Mabel Loomis Todd, but doesn't even make note that she will end up editing and publishing Emily's poems after her death; there's no mention even in epilogue text onscreen. The movie also makes much of Emily's crushes on married men and her longing for romantic love (while she is miserable over not being beautiful). It's rather strange, when Emily's sister Vinnie never married either and doesn't look so lonely; but she's not as reclusive I guess. The movie also shows Emily's increasing pain and seizures from Bright's disease. It must have been terrible for such a sharp mind to be trapped in a body that it could no longer control.

Before A Quiet Passion, there was a preview for a documentary called Letters From Baghdad about Gertrude Bell. It looks interesting, and even has actors playing famous friends and associates commenting on Bell. I'll definitely see it when it comes out in June.

Meanwhile, Netflix finally announced season 5 of Arrested Development, saying all the cast would return, yet I'm concerned that Will Arnett's twitter account says "I haven't signed anything." I hope he's just joking, but I'm not sure. Can't have season 5 without Gob and Tony Wonder.

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