REQUIEM FOR A DREAM by Hubert Selby

For my dance exam, I chose  the music created for the film « Requiem for a dream » and so I wanted to know more about this story.  I started this book, and I found interesting to tell you about!
Requiem for a Dream is a novel by Hubert Selby, published in 1978 that features characters from the American popular classes is gradually sinking into drug addiction.

The novel follows two main characters in parallel: Harry and his mother Sara, who both will sink into addiction to drugs.
we see the characters more and more addicted, we see the sinking more and more into the adiction and perceive the effects of drugs on the characters more and more present. Reactions vary, the characters move away from quotidient they become unsociable, they are in a vicious circle from which it is very dificult to get out.

Hubert Selby Jr wrote a novel about a subject he masters well. Former drug addict, he knows the world of drugs and knows what it means addiction. In this novel, it deals with two aspects of this kind of product, the well-being and sense of happiness, and power it generates from and pushes consumers to take more and more.
But first effect has the consequence that has been increasingly need the product which is less and less effect and you lose all sense of dignity.

I highly recommend this book, it is harrowing, touching, and really interesting.

Shirley- Charlotte Bronte

After studying Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte for my « TPE »(cross curricular project) which passionate me, I was interested in all the novels of Charlottes Bronte. I liked his novel called « Shirley ».
« Shirley » was published in 1849 and its popularity allowed to « Shirley » to become a woman’s name.
The story is set in Yorkshire during the last years of the Napoleonic Wars. Times are hard for the English, either for industrial or for the workers. In addition to the financial consequences of the war on trade, industry must deal with riots against their factories. Indeed, workers are worried about the arrival of new machinery. The main characters are Robert Moore, an industrialist and his brother Louis humble tutor. Caroline Helstone, pastor Helstone niece and cousin of Robert is in love with it. But Robert, with financial troubles and riots of the workers don’t want marriage. Fortunately for Carolina, comes to town the young heiress Keldar Shirley and his companion Mrs Prior.

http://hnstbkrvws.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/shirley.jpg                   
Charlotte Bronte was more proud of that novel that of « Jane Eyre » and I understand why. It’s more dense, it deals with politics, women’s issues, social classes, barriers of marriage and religion in general.
In this novel, Charlotte Bronte leaves an interesting evocation of life in England of the early nineteenth, customs, fears,the worker’s world face the bosse’s world, poverty and charity.
The novelist tackles the description of an entire city and is very frank to criticize the industrial and commercial class.

If you like Charlotte Bronte, I highly recommend you to read this novel. I really liked.

The adaptations of the novel Richard Matheson’s  » I am Legend « 

The novel I’m going to present is a novel whose adaptations are multiple and that was a great success.
« I am legend » is a science fiction novel by the American author Richard Matheson published in 1954. Richard Matheson tells the tragic story of a man who is the only survivor of an epidemic that has transformed all the inhabitants of the planette into horrible monsters that look like a mix between zombies and vampires. Humanity is reached by an evil and that man is immune but despite that it was the world to him, fear and loneliness gnaws him. Richard Matheson establishes in his novel a new society in which the hero of the story is not in his place.

Among all the novels of Richard Matheson, it’s « I am legend » that will generate the most interest of filmmakers. Between 1964 and 2007, four adaptations of this novel have emerged.
« The last man on earth » is the original adaptation of the novel directed by Ubaldo Ragona in 1964, the second adaptationt is that of Boris Sagal realised in 1971 called « The Omega Man » who adapts to the historical backdrop of the Cold War and civil wars. Then, Griff Sagal adaptation called « I am omega » released in 2007 is a Low cost adaptation released one month before the adaptation of Francis Lawrence. It’s this last adaptation called « i am legend » who has that most caught my attention.

It is for me a great post-apocalyptic film that plunges us into a dark and oppressive atmosphere with specatculaire view of New York completely empty. The hero is played by Will Smith who is a epoustouflant actor, and he succeeds to send us all the emotions of a man who is alone on earth. The film could be criticized for its lack of fidelity of the Richard Matheson’s novel, but it’s this modernity that I loved because it passed a society or the hero is not in his place in a society or the hero is the savior of humanity.

 

The Giver by Lois Lowry

I am going to present you a book which I read and which I adored. It is a novel by Lois Lowry published in 1993 in America and in 1994 in France.
He presents a futuristic society that is first represented as a utopia that appears more and more as a dystopia. The houses are all same, the ground is flat and without relief, the climate is mastered, people possess the same holding, the language is reduced, many words are eliminated as love, friendship, feeling etc… The pains and conflicts don’t exist and there are no emotions. In addition, the rules are extremely severe: it is forbidden to have more than two children per couple, engendered by designated carrier mothers, it is forbidden to go out at night and it is impossible to choose his future job.
The main character is Jonas, he is elected « the giver », it keeps the memories of time spent with his pains, pleasures like slipping on snow, feel the sun on the skin but also the pain of death and torture. But it is impossible for him to continue to live in a world where sentations not exists, and will do everything for that the world become normal.
It’s a wonderful book with alarming descriptions of a future world. This is a book that reflect on the importance of free will. I loved seeing Jonas open their eyes to the world around him and I was greatly touched by his discovery of love and colors and the emotions that he feels show that it is difficult to live without all this.

The Stalinism’s denonciation in « Animal Farm »

After seeing « 1984 » directed by Michael Radford in class and studying the George Orwell’s novel of same title thanks to several extract, I interested me to his precedent novel « Animal Farm ».
This is a fable published in 1945 that describes a farm where the animals revolt and take the power. Animals revolt against their masters in the hope to lead an independent life.
For them, « the man must disappear. »
But later, the pigs take control and use their superior inteligence to manipulate other animals.
A particular pig is defined as a dictator, he hunts his principal enemy, he establishes a cult of personality, he submittes the other pigs, and tires them by the hard work.
He promises to other animals a better life by fixing an impossible goal.
The history of the « Animal Farm » is clearly similar of the Russian revolution.
Orwell allows readers to understand the state of mind of dirgeants. We find in this novel some of the practices used in all dictatorships such as the cult of personality, the enemy presented as evil and is also find propaganda tools.
George Orwell offers a satire of the revolution in The Soviet Union and denounces Stalinism.

Sacco and Vanzetti

 

During the second week of vacation, I volunteered over a festival. I saw a show that upsets me and that I advise you very much.
This show is called Sacco and Vanzetti, it is played by two extraordinaires comedians that tell the true story of two Italian anarchists sentenced to death for acts they have not committed.
The scene takes place in 1927, at the Cherry Hill prison in the usa, Nicola Sacco has only a few hours to live before dying in the electric chair.
Suddenly appears Bartolomeo Vanzetti, his companion.
Then the two men told us their memories, fears of death, their lives, their families, and especially makes us understand thanks to their stories the politics of the roaring twenties to the united states led by corrupt representatives.
It is a shocking show that shows the horrible injustice of the politics of the time and the racism that is present throughout the show, played by very good comedians who closed the show with beautiful music « Bella chao » the singing of Italian partisans.

the roaring twenties’s silent film

The movie « The Artist » is a good representation of the roaring twenties’s cinema. It’s a silent film in black and white directed by Michel Hazanavicius and realized in 2011. This film shows Jean Dujardin in the role of  Goerge Valentin, a silent movie star who has to face the arrival of talkies by the end of the roaring twenties. The talkies changed the history of cinema during roaring twenties. This movie represents perfectly this change.

Then, the actrice Berenice Bejo shows the difficulties to become a star in this period.

Finaly, this film has all the features of a silent film, there are no dialogues, no colors and no large screen, still, directors and actors found the way to represents complex stories.

The green mile

The Green Mile is an american movie directed by Frank Darabont released in 1999.

This movie was adapted from the serial novel of the same name  which was written by Stephen King.

It’s the story of a prison guard who creates a strong friendship with a condemned death. The condemned to death in question is played by the actor Michael Clarke Duncan who is in my opinion the most suitable actor to play this role. this is a strength character who become more and more endearing.
The role of prison guard played by Tom Hanks who throughout the film tries to save his friend from his condanation to die.

I really liked this movie for various reasons. First, it’s very touching and particularly moving, the actors are fantastics. Finally, This film denounces judicial mistakes, but also racism and tolerance of men … this is a beautiful moral lesson!!

 

As you like it

William Shakespeare was born on April 1564 in Stratford -upon- Avon and died on 23 April 1616 in the same town. He is considered one of the greatest poets , playwrights and writers of English culture and wrote many tragedies like « Hamlet », « Romeo & Juliette », « Othello » … but also a lot of comedy like « As you like it ».

 » As you like it  » is a comedy written around 1599, just before Hamlet ( 1600-1601 ) .

We have seen in class three extracts of this comedy, our  teacher showed us the three extracts with specific way: the oldest to the most modern.

I prefer the third extract because it’s more modern ( the actress smokes on stage ), she is very expressive ( she cries , she laughs … ) , else, I enjoyed the crazy character.

In the first two extracts , It’s the makeup that turns girls into boys while in this extract, the girl naturally looks like a boy.

It’s for the choice of the actress that I preferred the third extract.

Alice in wonderland

Lewis Carroll is a great English writer of the 19th century. He is the author of the famous story of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”. He found his inspiration thanks to a little girl named Alice during a photo shoot. Lewis Carroll told the fantastic story of a dreamy girl to the young Alice, who asked him to write this story. The author has published this story in 1845.

This story was adapted numerous times but one of the most representative and popular is “Alice in Wonderland” by Walt Disney in 1951.
The goal of this adaptation was to target a young public, which was a great success.

Then we have seen in class another adaptation that was also a real success, “Alice in Wonderland” by Tim Burton in 2010. Unlike adaptation of Walt Disney, Tim Burton aims a wider public because he doesn’t just represent the original story, but to rewrite to suit his way. This adaptation is for me the best and the most impressive.

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

In the both extracts we have seen in class that we could consider two versions on Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. I prefer the second version because the first one is not really realistic : indeed according to this version Mr Hyde is ape-like and that refers to prehistoric men although in the second version he looks like a monster : we can say that they choose a monster because it’s more impressive : the monster is horrible. On the one hand he presents physical ugliness and on the second hand psychological ugliness. In my opinion, that’s more realistic : that’s why I would say that I prefer the second version.Dr. Jekyll et Mr. Hyde : Photo