Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Highsmith on a roll ....

Patricia Highsmith, one of my favourite writers ever since reading THE TALENTED MR RIPLEY as a teenager, and loving the Rene Clement film PLEIN SOLEIL in 1960 - now burnished like new on Blu-ray - seems to be on a roll at the moment, with three new films from her novels.

Oscar-winner Cate Blanchett is filming CAROL with Rooney Mara for FAR FROM HEAVEN director Todd Haynes (who also did that re-boot of MILDRED PIERCE recently), for release next year. This is a lesbian drama (following on from BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOUR?) based on an early Highsmith novel "The Price of Salt" and is set in the early '50s with Banchett as the affluent married woman who gets involved with a shop girl. It will at least look marvellous ... Below: Blanchett filming CAROL.
Just about to open here is the highly regarded THE TWO FACES OF JANUARY, from Hossein Amini, with Viggo Mortenson, Kirsten Dunst, Oscar Isaac and Daisy Bevan (Joely Richardson's daughter), this is from a novel I liked a lot. and THE BLUNDERER is another very Highsmith tale in production with Toby Jones. 

Highsmith (1921-1995) of course has been in vogue since Hitchcock and Raymond Chandler adopted her first novel STRANGERS ON A TRAIN in 1951, then Rene Clement and Anthony Mingella gave us their versions of THE TALENTED MR RIPLEY. There were also French films on THIS SWEET SICKNESS (by Claude Miller with Depardieu), and Liliana Cavani's RIPLEY'S GAME, not to mention Wim Wenders' 1977 classic THE AMERICAN FRIEND ... Below: a studio pose for Robert Walker, Ruth Roman and Farley Granger for STRANGERS ON A TRAIN.
Above: Dennis Hopper and Bruno Ganz in Wenders' chilly THE AMERICAN FRIEND, and Delon and Maurice Ronet realising he is in danger in PLEIN SOLEIL. - more on those at labels.

If film-makers are looking for more Highsmith, I recommend her 1977 novel EDITH'S DIARY. Her final novel SMALL g: A SUMMER IDYLL could be an interesting film too with its open gay themes. Then there's all her short stories, and of course her own mysterious life, as per those biographies on her, as she went from America to England to France and deepest Europe, with her passion for cats and snails ...she was strikingly attractive in her youth (there are some nudes) and gave lots of interesting interviews, as well as that incredible backlist of novels and stories.

No comments:

Post a Comment