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Wuthering Heights (2011)

Angry Hearts — Written by lezard on 03.05.2022

First of all, I must say that this novel is one of my favorite books ever.
But when it comes to adapting a novel for the screen, the fact of it being accurate or faifhtful is irrelevant. Indeed any movie is "adapted from" not "a filmed copy of"!
Would anyone blame "Apocalypse Now" for not being faithful to "The Heart of Darkness" by Conrad? Or Peter Jackson for daring to introduce comedy scenes in his very long remake of King Kong? Or any band for the cover of an old song?
What is interesting when you adapt a work of any kind is not how accurate or faifhtful you are but how different and personal your vision is! If not, why make a remake?
When it comes to this movie, yes Heathcliff is black, yes it is windy, rainy, snowy, sometimes deafening (have you ever been to Yorshire in winter or fall?), yes dialogues are scarse, but it works.
There is a undeniably, a vision here. We can believe in the characters, among which the landscape, the very earth . Indeed when Heathcliff comes back, Catherine points at the scenery and asks him "How could you forget that?". It is an unusual love-triangle: man-woman-landscape.

This adaptation focuses on what can't be expressed, because you can't admit it (Catherine), you don't have the words (Heathcliff), people/society won't admit it and won't entitle you to.
Feelings are like a maëlstrom "Never with you. Never without you." Catherine wants mud and respectability and Heathcliff curses what he loves most.

There is passion, violence.
The violence of a society, a time and a place.
The violence of a desire as strong as a winter wind, and for which you have no name, a desire that scares you. And the other that you desire and can't stand is also YOU ("He is more myself than I am!").
The violence of The English society and its hierarchy: aristocrats, rich landowners, peasants, workers, slaves, men and women, blacks and whites,

As to the filming itself, yes it is unsettling. The camera keeps moving, vibrating. Could you expect anything else? Can you film a maëlstrom of passion with a fixed frame, beautiful photoshopped landscapes and be credible?
Let yourself be unsettled. You may not like it but if you love the book, you have to give it a try. If you consider passion should be more "middle of the road", just watch "Twilight"!

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Wuthering Heights Reviews