January 24th, 2010

reading

The Film and the Book: Little Women



There was a discussion recently on the cornflower blog about film adaptations of books. I thought of this when watching the 1994 film of Little Women again. As long as people read, they will go on discussing this book; I’ve only just found a whole Live Journal community of littlewomenfans. The Provincial Lady was a devotee. In The Provincial Lady in America, her kind American hosts are bemused by her insistence that ‘the thing I want to do most of all is to visit the Alcott house at Concord, Mass.’ This proves surprisingly difficult but she makes it and ‘could willingly remain there for hours and hours.’ Later, she meets up with Mademoiselle (now employed in another family) and suggests that they go to see the film of Little Women. Cue explosion from Mlle., Cette chère vie de famille – ce gentil roman de la jeunesse – cette drôle de Jo etc. etc. They do make it to the film and

‘Well-remembered house at Concord is thrown on the screen, snow falling on the ground, and I dissolve, without the slightest hesitation, in floods of tears. Film continues unutterably moving throughout and is beautifully acted and produced. Mademoiselle weeps beside me – can hear most people round us doing the same – and we spend entirely blissful afternoon.’

I’m assuming they watched George Cukor’s 1933 version which I have seen but so long ago I can’t remember what it was like.
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