Monday, 25 October 2010
Wuthering Heights 1939
In a letter to his wife Margerie written in September 1939, Lowry mentions 3 films that he saw while in Vancouver during the Fall of 1939. One was Wyler's Wuthering Heights, the second was The Hound Of The Baskevilles with Basil Rathbone and the third was the cartoon Playful Polar Bears.
I thought Wuthering Heights was perfectly lousy too: a marvellous story directed by a charwoman. The Collected Letters of Malcolm Lowry Volume 1.
He goes on to complain about the quality of the sets and backdrops. Lowry compares Laurence Olivier's performance in the film to attempt to impersonate Paul Muni.
Wuthering Heights is a 1939 American black and white film directed by William Wyler and produced by Samuel Goldwyn. It is based on the novel, Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë. The film depicts only sixteen of the novel's thirty-four chapters, eliminating the second generation of characters. The novel was adapted for the screen by Charles MacArthur, Ben Hecht and John Huston. The film won the 1939 New York Film Critics Award for Best Film. It earned nominations for eight Academy Awards, including for Best Picture and Best Actor. The 1939 Academy Award for Best Cinematography, black and white category, was awarded to Gregg Toland for his work. Read more on Wikipedia
It is funny now to think that one of the screen writers John Huston was to direct the only film adaption of Under The Volcano.
Lowry had a copy of Bronte's Wuthering Heights in his library in Dollarton.