Bright Star

2010-02-10 11:32
 
Bright Star

What it's about:

London 1818: a secret love affair begins between 23-year-old English poet, John Keats, and the girl next door, Fanny Brawne, an outspoken student of fashion. This unlikely pair started at odds; he thinking her a stylish minx, she unimpressed by literature in general. It was the illness of Keats’s younger brother that drew them together. Keats was touched by Fanny’s efforts to help and agreed to teach her poetry.By the time Fanny’s alarmed mother and Keats’s best friend Brown realised their attachment, the relationship had an unstoppable momentum. Intensely and helplessly absorbed in each other, the young lovers were swept into powerful new sensations, "I have the feeling as if I were dissolving", Keats wrote to her. Together they rode a wave of romantic obsession that deepened as their troubles mounted.

What we thought:

Everyone who's ever been desperately, romantically in love knows that true love is a sickness. Or at least it feels like the onset of a fatal disease. Your heart, literally, aches. Your mind can think of nothing else... until you recover and things settle down. But although people are still the same creatures, the idea of a powerful, crazy passion has become unfashionable in film lately.

Successful screen hook-ups now tend to involve mutual understanding, mutual respect and communication, which might be good for you, but are boring to watch or even experience directly. So Bright Star - a work of art drenched in frustrated desires and passions, and rich in emotional complications, is amazing and exciting.

Although the film portrays emotional extremes, The Piano director Jane Campion tortures deeply delicate emotional nuances from the actors. Sound is a sensual medium, bringing you very close, almost too close, to the interactions between the lovers. There's no loud, simplistic orchestral soundtrack telling you what to feel and when to feel it. Instead, the rock ‘n roll of Keats' romantic verse gives the film another layer of meaning, matched by unspeakably beautiful images that find fairy wildness in the English suburbs and beauty in terrible loss and tragedy.

The actors' beauty isn't the polished model beauty of teen sitcoms, but a very real, very close beauty that leaves you thinking you can smell actress Abbie Cornish‘s skin, and with a lingering crush on the sickly but glamorous struggling rock star poet that Ben Wishaw creates for Keats. I even developed some sympathy for Keats' rude but likeable poet friend Charles (Paul Schneider).

This is a serious, unusual and beautiful film that doesn't rely on a fetish for costume drama, or a love of poetry, to completely seduce you.


The story of the beautiful and deeply romantic three-year love affair between poet John Keats and his neighbour, Fanny Brawne.

PRESHEN GOVENDER 2010/02/05 4:09 PM
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hope they have a sex scene
slindile 2010/02/08 2:24 PM
Omy goodness Prenesh that is all you are wondering about the movie
Hilary 2010/02/08 4:12 PM
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Keats is one of my favourite poets ... I will definately be enjoying this ... love like this is rare these days
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