Sunday, April 7, 2013

Period Drama Challenge: February and March Tag Questions

For all of February and March, this blog has been rather empty and lonely - but at long last, I've returned.  I've finished my first review for the Period Drama Challenge, on Le Silence de la Mer, a French WWII film.  I would have posted my first review a long time ago, but I never had enough time to finish it until recently.  I have also never answered the tag questions for February and March, but I am about to do that now.  Below are my answers to the tag questions for both February and March.

February Tag Questions:

1)  What period dramas have you watched in February?

I saw a French period film, called La Fille du Puisatier, or The Well Digger's Daughter (2011).  La Fille du Puisatier is set in the French countryside pre-World War II.  It's rich with emotion, perfectly cast, and the scenery of the French countryside is absolutely beautiful.  I think it's a well done film and I definitely recommend it.

2)  How many Charles Dickens adaptations have you seen?

In order from the first Charles Dickens adaptation I ever saw to what I most recently saw:

1)  Charles Dickens Classics:  Nicholas Nickleby (the animated version from 1990 - I still have the VHS of this film.  I watched it many times when I was little).
2)  Charles Dickens Classics:  Great Expectations (the animated version from the early '90's - I also have the VHS of this from when I was little).
3)  Nicholas Nickleby (2002)
4)  Bleak House (2005)
5)  Dombey and Son (1983)
6)  Martin Chuzzlewit (1994)

I may have seen others, but the ones listed above are all I can remember at present.

3)  Do you prefer heroes that are spotless wealthy gentlemen or gritty hardworking men?

I wouldn't choose either above the other, because it all depends on who the man is.  So I suppose my answer to this question is both.  There are great heroes that are spotless wealthy gentlemen like Mr. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice, Mr. Knightley from Emma, and so on, while there are equally great heroes that are hardworking, like Mr. Thornton from North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell.

Mr. Thornton presides over his cotton mill in North and South (2004).
There are good and bad spotless wealthy gentlemen, and there are good and bad gritty hardworking men, so as I said, it depends on who is wearing the spotless wealthy clothes or the gritty work(ing) clothes.

4. Do you tend to prefer heroines that are sweet and gentle or adventurous and spunky?

I love both kinds of heroines; they each have their own virtues.  But I think my answer would be adventurous and spunky, as they tend to leave a more memorable impression, such as Elizabeth Bennet.  The one thing I can't stand, however, is when a heroine seems contrived to be spunky.  With Elizabeth Bennet, it doesn't feel forced (and therefore annoying) at all; it's completely natural.  I do tend to sympathise with heroines that are more shy, though, since I am sometimes shy as well.  I find them quite sympathetic.

5. Do you enjoy listening to period drama soundtracks? Do you own any?

No, I don't own any soundtracks.  It never occurred to me before to own one.  Now that I think of it, I wish I did!  Period drama soundtracks are so beautiful and of key importance to the film they are from.

March Tag Questions:

1)  What period dramas have you watched in March?

I have seen a few period films, but mostly I have been watching a lot of Film Noir, such as Out of the Past, The Big Heat, and Laura, all of which are well known in the Film Noir genre.  One of the period films I watched was That Hamilton Woman, starring Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier.  That Hamilton Woman is a 1941 film that takes place in the late 18th century/early 19th century (Napoleonic Era).  

2)  How many adaptations of Jane Eyre have you seen?  Do you have a favorite?

I have seen clips of older versions and the 2011 version, but the only adaptation of Jane Eyre I have watched from beginning to end is the 2006 version.  From what I have observed, the 2006 version seems to be the best, but I will have to see other versions to be sure.

3)  Do you prefer period drama villains who are cleverly cunning or downright diabolical?

I prefer villains who are cleverly cunning.  They are more complex and interesting to observe.  Downright diabolical period drama villains would be cool too, but as long as they're also clever.  Clever villains are the most interesting, like Mr. Tulkinghorn from Charles Dickens' Bleak House.

4)  How often does watching a period drama make you want to read the book it's based on?

Many times.  Period films tend to have that effect, I've noticed.  :) North and South (2004) by the BBC is an example of a period film that makes me want to read the book.  The more times I watched North and South, the more I wanted to read the book.  I enjoyed it immensely, and it introduced me to Elizabeth Gaskell's wonderful writing.  North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell is now one of my most favorite novels of all time.  Most of the time the only reason I don't want to read the book after viewing a period film is because I've already read it.

5)  What older period drama would you like to see a remake of?

I can't really think of any period dramas I'd like to see a remake of, but I do know what adaptations I'd like to see made.  I wish more film adaptations of L. M. Montgomery's novels were made, such as the Pat of Silver Bush series.  The mere fact that there aren't enough film adaptations of L. M. Montgomery's work makes me want to become a film director and make them myself!

To the left is the dust cover illustration, by Edna Cooke, of the 1933 first edition of Pat of Silver Bush, by Lucy Maud Montgomery.


  1. I love film noir! And things set in the 1940s count for this challenge, so I reviewed Laura for it (here), and also To Have and Have Not (here) for the challenge. I really liked Out of the Past, though I must admit I've only seen it once, and I really need to see The Big Heat again, as all I remember right now is poor Gloria Grahame's bandaged face.

    1. It's nice to meet you! :) I will read your reviews, I'm very interested in Film Noir and I'm curious to know what your opinion of them are. I saw Laura, Out of the Past, and The Big Heat. I haven't heard of To Have and Have Not before, but it sounds like a movie I would like. I enjoyed Laura and The Big Heat a lot. Out of the Past was very good, but for some reason the story and characters didn't interest me as much.

    2. Ooooooooh, you're relatively new to noir? What a fascinating, foreboding journey you have ahead.

      I'm actually going to be doing a post soon on my ten favorite noirs, but for right now, let me just say that you can't go wrong with Dana Andrews and Humphrey Bogart :-) Or Glenn Ford, really.

    3. Dana Andrews, Humphrey Bogart, and Glenn Ford are all great! Film Noir is one of my favorite film genres and I can't wait to watch more of it. :)

  2. Hello!

    I just discovered your blogs from a link on another blog.

    I love Film Noir and really like the movie Laura!

    I saw "That Hamilton Woman" for the first time last summer and I adored it. I got really interested in Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier last summer and tried to watch as many of the movies that they made together as I could. I really like this website:

    I saw The Well Digger's Daughter just a few weeks ago and I adored it. I don't think I've seen it mentioned on any of the other period drama blogs that I follow so I just had to comment :-)

    Your blog is beautiful!

    1. Welcome to my blogs! :)

      Laura is one of my most favorite Film Noirs ever. I just recently finished watching another Film Noir similar to Laura, called Vicki (1953). I thought it was good as well, but not quite as great as Laura (in my opinion).

      I adored That Hamilton Woman too - it has since become one of my favorite movies. I love both Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier. looks really really cool!

      The Well Digger's Daughter was so nice! It was filled with emotion and the scenery was absolutely breathtaking.

      Thank you so much! :D