Sunday, 4 October 2009
Under The Volcano Movie @ FACT Liverpool 7/10/09
Under The Volcano (15)
Directed by John Huston Mexico/USA 1984 112mins
Introduced by Mark Goodall (University Of Bradford)
88 Wood Street
Tel. No. 0871 704 2063
John Huston's film version of Malcolm Lowry's novel Under The Volcano is being shown as part of the Malcolm Lowry Centenary Festival as above.
Under The Volcano
Under the Volcano is a 1984 film directed in Mexico by John Huston with Albert Finney, Jacqueline Bisset, Anthony Andrews and Katy Jurado heading the cast. The film received Academy Award nominations for Best Actor in a Leading Role (Albert Finney) and Best Music, Original Score (Alex North).
It is based on the 1947 novel by English writer Malcolm Lowry which was adapted to radio on Studio One in 1947.
Remaining faithful to Lowry's original novel, Huston's film tells the story of Geoffrey Firmin, an alcoholic British consul in the small Mexican town of Quauhnahuac (recognizably Cuernavaca), on the Day of the Dead in 1938.
The film was entered into the 1984 Cannes Film Festival.
Reviewing in The New York Times, Janet Maslin had much praise for Finney's performance:
Drunkenness, so often represented on the screen by overacting of the most sodden sort, becomes the occasion for a performance of extraordinary delicacy from Albert Finney, who brilliantly captures the Consul's pathos, his fragility and his stature. Alcoholism is the central device in Mr. Lowry's partially autobiographical novel. (The author, like the Consul, was capable of drinking shaving lotion when nothing more potable was at hand.) Yet the Consul's drinking is astonishingly fine-tuned, affording him a protective filter while also allowing for moments of keen, unexpected lucidity. Mr. Finney conveys this beautifully, with the many and varied nuances for which Guy Gallo's screenplay allows. For instance, when the exquisite Yvonne (played elegantly and movingly by Jacqueline Bisset) reappears in Cuernavaca one morning, she finds her ex-husband in a cantina, still wearing his evening clothes. He turns to gaze at her for a moment, pauses briefly, and then continues talking as if nothing had happened. Seconds later, he turns again and looks at Yvonne more closely, still not certain whether or not this is a hallucination. It takes a long while for the fact of Yvonne's return to penetrate the different layers of the Consul's inebriated consciousness, and Mr. Finney delineates the process with grace and precision, stage by stage. Wikipedia