Friday, December 9, 2011

And Watching Movies

Since I yanked the tv service back in September, gladly, I use the tv set mainly as a DVD and CD player, and have not missed the awful tv programming, particularly the gloomy miserable PBS news and pontificating pundits.

What I do have is a great series of choices of DVD from the library, and have just finished watching a series based on stories of Henry James, Affairs of the Heart. Great production, brand name actors throughout, and I was riveted through all the episodes, wondering at the same time why on earth James ever got published. His take on women and their motivations is simply that of a dolt. I guess he was a well connected dolt, since he did get into the big literary time. I'm guessing that Americans figured he was a success in England, and the English thought he must be a success in the US, and he did just fine that way. In some circles he's considered Holy Writ, and you scorn him at your peril. Well, consider me imperiled.

Reminds me of a story about Lawrence Durrell told by a relative who knew him only as a press attache who wrote, and thought, while he was the worst press attache in history, he was probably a good writer. And the critic who knew him as a writer,whose day job was press attache, thought he was one of the worst writers in print, but was probably a good press attache..

And I've embarked on The Pallisers, an endless series based on Trollope's novels, equally riveting but the difference in perception is great. Not fair to James to watch Trollope right after him, I guess, but Trollope is so sly and funny and knows when he's being sly and funny, gives the best lines to the unlikely people, and is altogether worth it. I keep thinking I should read him again, since I remember liking Barchester Towers so much many years ago. If you want a read that will go on and on, he's your man. Maybe I'll make this a Trollope Winter!

Blogista takes on all these dogmatic opinions and reading choices, always welcome!


Minimiss said...

I remember watching The Pallisers on TV years and years ago. At the moment I'm watching Downton Abbey on DVD. Just loving the costuming and characters. Fabulous.

annie1931 said...

I too watched the Pallisers years ago - in Holland. Have you watched the Barchester Chronicles? Just like the books and beautifully played by all the actors. Donald Pleasance is a joy, and Alan Rickman as Mr. Slope is beyond words.