The Last Jane Austen . . .

vee_new

J A's unfinished work Sanditon has been made for ITV, most of it written/adapted by Andrew Davies as only a few chapters had been completed before her death.

Set in a yet to be re-built 'sea-side' town with almost too many characters to remember, it has several scenes/lines that would have caused Miss Austen's eyebrows to rise and a deep blush to cover her face.

Plenty of male buttocks frolicing in the waves, a young heroine allowed out and about among workmen with no escort and, even worse, no bonnet and a brother and sister who's relationship is rather too close for comfort. As for another 'respectable' young woman's conduct with the local 'rake' (and not the kind used in the garden) it causes a very unladylike remark about the goings on as witnessed by heroine Charlotte. "She wouldn't know the difference between a pr*ck and a pencil." No wonder poor C has a permanent twitchy look.

Many of the characters are down-right unpleasant and resemble those from Vanity Fair , which is, I suppose, how JA originally portrayed them; money grubbing and out for what they could get.

Will I carry on watching it? Probably, as it is showing on a Sunday night; the High Drama Spot for UK TV. And the ladies costumes are pretty.

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vee_new

A Clip about making the show . . . one of the external venues



Sanditon

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annpanagain

I shall watch this with interest. Reginald Hill has written a book using the fragment of Sanditon in "The Price of Butcher's Meat/ UK pub. A Cure for all Diseases" in a very clever way.

I have become inured to the lack of bonnets in 19thC portrayals, with a sigh! The explanation has been that a bonneted face doesn't show up well on camera!

I am also inured to the liberties taken with authors by scriptwriters, like some of the Christie horrors and watch them anyway for the period staging.

The adaptations that veer wildly from the original I treat as a different story altogether...

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carolyn_ky

Speaking of period dramas, Downton Abbey, the movie, is coming to Louisville on the 20th. My daughter's birthday is the 21st, and she has asked to be taken to see it that afternoon. That will be if I can get tickets, which I expect will be sold out early. I did watch and enjoy the TV series, but I'm not one of the hysterically devoted fans.

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vee_new

Annpan, perhaps not many takers for Sanditon here. I realise we can't get into the 'feel' of the early nineteenth century and I'm not sure when a bow/curtsy was replaced by a handshake but I feel the modern man-hug is going too far. Also the habit of the gentlemen removing their coats and sitting in their shirt sleeves seems unrealistic . . . and their is a wonderful scene straight out of a shampoo advert where one Lord greets a young lady with a Veronica Lake hair-do, with a comment about her beautiful shiny locks . . . .

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vee_new

Carolyn, a clever money-making move with the Downton Abbey film, made with the American market very much in mind.

Sometime ago there was an interview with Dame Maggie Smith about the possibility of a movie being made and she did quite a bit of eye rolling . . . I imagine it brings her in a few bob but is not her idea of quality drama!


Write up and Trailer for Downton Abbey

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annpanagain

Vee, I understand that people would get annoyed at modern manners being grafted onto the 19thC but really we don't know exactly what people did then.

They were certainly more free and easy than the Victorians. Perhaps a Regency man might hug a friend or take off his coat in hot weather for comfort or to do a certain task but a lady would never go out without wearing a bonnet!

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annpanagain

Vee, talking about TV shows, have you watched "Keeping Faith"? I was interested by the idea of it being shot simultaneously in Welsh and English. I saw the first episode recently and rushed to get the entire series on DVD, not wanting to wait for the weekly showing.

I thought you might have seen it and the second series which I believe has started now. It is a bit moody and slow but an intriguing mystery!

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vee_new

Annpan, yes I did watch it but think I must have missed the last episode as I can't remember how it ended. I do know I felt some concern for the two children who were forever being dragged about in the middle of the night!

Did you or anyone see Bodyguard? That moved at a fast pace.

And on a film/TV topic we have here in our village a large film-crew parked about a quarter of a mile from us with all the trucks, trailers and electrical equipment enough to power a small town. Not sure what is being made (always very hush-hush) but the word is it is something to do with Camelot; so it could be Merlin/Arthur related. I thought as offering myself for a bit-part as an old crone.

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annpanagain

Vee, the last episode finished with a cliff hanger as she got the children back and was finally in a clinch with Baldini when she saw that her missing husband holding the children were watching her! Because of all the time "too and froing" in the show I wasn't sure if that was a "then" moment again and had to look it up on the websites to find out! Yes, it was really happening... tune in to series two...

No, I haven't seen Bodyguard. I shall check it out.

You could find out if the film crew need extras! I was in a film many years ago but when I started to " Tell" this, the teacher told me to sit down. She chided me privately at the end of class, saying that she wanted true stories and was gobsmacked when I told her it really was true, citing the location etc.

Lesson for teachers ...never be surprised at what children come out with!

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carolyn_ky

My mother, a first grade teacher, said no family had any secrets from her, and if the story wasn't good enough, it would sometimes be embellished.

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vee_new

Carolyn, did you manage to get tickets for Downton Abbey? I hope you and your daughter enjoy the show. Please report back on it when you have time.

Ann what was the movie you were in? Am I likely to see you in a re-run on afternoon TV? We have a recently started channel called 'Talking Pictures'. A small company bought the rights to older films, usually B pictures and often showing people that went on to be 'famous' . . . or those hack actors that always played the small-time crook or the police inspector. An enjoyable way to spend a couple of hours when it is raining and cold outside!

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annpanagain

Vee, I was in a documentary for a children's newsreel shown at the Saturday Morning Children's Club run by Odeon Cinemas. A small group of the Monitors went to the stables at Arundel Castle which was owned by the Duke of Norfolk.

We were filmed with the horses and sitting on a fence supposedly watching the foals. They weren't there but a cameraman galloped up and down the paddock to get a reaction from us!

The Club was on every Saturday throughout the country. Did you ever go? I think it cost sixpence and lasted a couple of hours. The program was a cartoon, the newsreel, a short nature documentary and a feature film suitable for children.

Laurel and Hardy was the favourite and a cowboy film the least favourite with the girls as the boys got silly and rough afterwards.

I was a monitor and got in free but had to try to keep order.

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carolyn_ky

"I was a monitor and got in free but had to try to keep order." And good luck with that! I went along as a bus chaperone on Kentucky history field trips when my grandson was in fourth grade. It was a hopeless case.

Yes, Vee, just today I got tickets for the Saturday afternoon showing of Downton Abbey. It is playing in a lot of theaters all over town so I suspect we would have been able to just walk in, but now we know for sure we can go to the closest one to us.


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vee_new

Annpan, as children we almost never went to the flicks and there would have been no chance of us going to the Saturday morning shows as my late Mother had inherited some of her Mother's snootiness (she wasn't even allowed to join the Girl Guides as grandmother had once seen a Guide talking to the butcher's boy . . . . my dear, social ostracism . . .) I asked John if he had even been and he said the nearest was seeing the queue of wild, fighting kids pushing and shoving to get in! His Mother would never allow him to go either, saying it was too rough.

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annpanagain

As Carolyn said "Good luck!" with keeping order.

Although it was 70 years ago, I fell foul of what would now be Political Correctness when I mentioned to some classmates how noisy the boys from the Orphanage were as they clomped up the wooden stairs to the balcony and threws thing down, in spite of the nuns who accompanied them.

For some reason, perhaps a misunderstanding of what I said, some classmates went against me and I was "sent to Coventry". The teacher was probably informed and asked me if I was all right. Yes, I was fine because those girls never spoke to me anyway!

I was totally unaware I was being ostracised until I was told it was finished. I had to ask what had been happening!

The whole thing blew over but I have always wondered what I was supposed to have done wrong. As I retorted to those classmates, who never even went to the Saturday Morning Pictures "But they ARE noisy!"

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carolyn_ky

Ann, that's funny that you didn't know you were being ostracised. I have been known to tell people if they mean to hurt my feelings they will have to tell me. Otherwise, I won't pay any attention.

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vee_new

Carolyn, did you both enjoy your visit to Downton Abbey?

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carolyn_ky

Yes, very much. We laughed our way through it. Maggie Smith is so good. (I suppose you know that.)

We were in London once years ago when she and Judy Dench were in a play together, but we were not able to get tickets for it. I still regret it, but I've forgotten what the name of the play was.


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vee_new

Watched the final episode of Sanditon last night . . . and no Happy Ending!

Does this mean another series is being planned? Our young heroine, she of the wild, often bonnet-less hair, to the end, puts her elders and betters in their place, while the young Caribbean heiress goes from being a 'main player' to a bit-part with no further input into the story.

Obviously the budget didn't stretch to many minor speaking parts as the quite wealthy families had to answer their own doors and had no-one to care for their children. Only Lady So-and-So had liveried flunkies.

Annpan, if you watch this think of me living a few miles upstream of the coastal setting on the Severn Estuary. The outdoor shots were made at Brean Sands near Weston-super-Mare . . .presumably very early in the morning before any holiday-makers were about!

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vee_new

Coming soon to a TV screen near you . . . we are promised His Dark Materials from the Philip Pulman books, another version of Dracula. Elizabeth is Missing with Glenda Jackson, some more mad nuns in Rumer Godden's Black Narcissus and yet another go at H G Wells War of the Worlds.

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annpanagain

Vee, I also noticed a lack of servants opening doors in Vanity Fair and bad manners from those servants who did! No bowing in the noble visitor and Lady Bareacres maid called Becky and others "Miss" and not "Ma'am". Hardly any woman curtsied.

I convulsed with laughing at the "Hi" greeting Mrs Sedley gave to her daughter Amelia, just returned from boarding school!

I don't want too much bygone speech and manners portrayed but at least sketch some in!

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vee_new

Annpan, I noticed in the last episode of Sanditon where a group of people attend a funeral in a church yard none of the men removed their hats.

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annpanagain

Perhaps the people who make shows set in earlier days don't realise the importance of hats and the etiquette around them. In the books I read, set in the Golden Age, even in the greatest emergency, the male characters always snatch up their hat before dashing off! If there isn't one available, they borrow or commandeer one!

BTW, I love wearing hats and have amassed around forty or more assorted styles because I never get rid of them. A local boutique has a display of elegant ones for the Spring Race Meetings and I have to be firm about that. Look but don't buy!

Oh, but they are so pretty...

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