Fall Movie Line-up: A Literary Feast
I absolutely love the entire experience of going to movie theatres: the smell of fake butter on popcorn, the plush but squeaky seats, the adorable little lights to guide your way down the aisles, the previews, and even the ridiculously high ticket prices. Nothing can keep me away from the silver screen, especially with some of the literary gems that have been adapted for movie releases this fall. Here are just a few titles you might want to check out yourself:
The Duchess (opened in theaters September 19)
Starring Keira Knightley, Ralph Feinnes, Charlotte Rampling, Dominic Cooper, Hayley Atwell, Simon McBurney, this film is oozing talent, gorgeous sets and costumes and of course, a dramatic story. Based on Georgiana: Duchess of Devonshire by Amanda Foreman, Knightley stars as the title character who was one of the founding leaders of the Whig Party, as well as a social sensation.
Blindness (September 26)
Jose Saramago’s masterpiece Blindness is now a Brazilian film starring Julianne Moore as the only woman who can see in a city devastated by blindness. After the “white sickness” spreads throughout the city, people who are blind are rounded up and hauled off to an asylum to “quarantine” the victims. One woman pretends to be blind in order to remain close to her husband who is in the asylum, and she helps seven people escape–but how will they survive, and is there a cure? From Nobel Prize-winning author Saramago and director Fernando Meirelles comes the story of humanity in the grip of an epidemic. Also starring Mark Ruffalo, Alice Braga and Gael Garcia Bernal.
Choke (September 26)
If you liked Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk, you’ll love Choke, which looks to be a promising movie adaptation, too. Victor Mancini is a sex-addicted med-school dropout who keeps his increasingly deranged mother, Ida, in an expensive private medical hospital by playing an Irish indentured servant in a colonial-era theme park. At night Victor runs a scam by deliberately choking in upscale restaurants to form parasitic relationships with the wealthy patrons who “save” him. When, in a rare lucid movement, Ida reveals that she has withheld the shocking truth of his father’s identity, Victor enlists the aid of his best friend, Danny, and his mother’s beautiful physician, Dr. Paige Marshall, to solve the mystery before the truth of his possibly divine parentage is lost forever.
Miracle at St. Anna (September 26)
A cast of virtual unknowns (Derek Luke, Michael Ealy, Laz Alonso, Omar Benson Miller and Matteo Sciabordi), this adaptation from the book of the same name by James McBride is directed by Spike Lee. It chronicles the story of four black American soldiers who are members of the U.S. Army as part of the all-black 92nd “Buffalo Soldier” Division stationed in Tuscany, Italy during World War II. Hints of “Saving Private Ryan” appear as the group of soldiers are separated from their division when one of them goes on a mission to protect a young Italian boy.
Nights in Rodanthe (September 26)
In the romantic drama Nights in Rodanthe, Adrienne (Diane Lane), a woman with her life in chaos, retreats to the tiny coastal town of Rodanthe, in the outer banks of North Carolina, to tend to a friend’s inn for the weekend. A storm blows in, as well as a handsome doctor (Richard Gere). It’s a romance that only author Nicholas Sparks (The Notebook) can conjure on the silver screen.
The Road (November 26)
Last year, Cormac McCarthy saw his novel The Road stamped by Oprah’s Book Club, and get optioned for a feature film. In the meantime, his other book No Country for Old Men was released on theatre screens across the country, and became widely popular. The movie adaptation of The Road is here with John HIllcoat (The Proposition) directing. The movie definitely has a great cast (Viggo Mortensen and Charlize Theron) and a provocative (if depressing) subject: the end of the world.
Revolutionary Road (December 26)
Based on the classic 1960s novel by Richard Yates and directed by “American Beauty” genius Sam Mendes , Revolutionary Road is about a young married couple who are unhappy despite living seemingly picture-perfect lives in the suburbs. The book was nominated for the 1962 National Book Award) and stars Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio, partnering together for a second time since their roles in “Titanic” eleven years ago.