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IceAlisa
02-21-2011, 08:02 PM
Finally finished Possession. It turned out to be a good read after all (though I confess I'm not sorry to be done ;) ).

I love this: "He had time to feel the strangeness of before and after; an hour ago there had been no poems, and now they came like rain and were real."

You are way ahead of me: I am still mired in the letters and succinct those two certainly are not. I do enjoy the metaphor of Melusine and will persevere.

IceAlisa
02-21-2011, 11:15 PM
Finally something I liked a lot in the letters:

I shall wait under the trees...and look out for a woman like a steady upright flame and a grey hound poured along the ground like smoke--

That's very nice. I also enjoyed the mention of the Chinese dragon although it's usually transliterated as Long, not Lung and the persistent mention of the elements of water and fire--very Chinese indeed.

Wyliefan
02-21-2011, 11:20 PM
succinct those two certainly are not.

That's the truth. :lol: As you say, though, they do have a wonderful turn of phrase every now and then!

No spoilers, but when you get further along . . . it's interesting to note how the author sometimes goes back in time to show the reader something that the letters don't mention -- pretty important things, most of these -- and to think about the difference between what we know and what the researchers in the story know.

IceAlisa
02-21-2011, 11:32 PM
Don't worry about spoiling me--I love to be spoiled. Plus I saw the movie. :)

Wyliefan
02-21-2011, 11:38 PM
Oh, okay, then I guess you have few surprises left. :) Although I don't know how closely the movie follows the book.

I'm of two minds whether to see the movie myself. The reviews I've read said that the Ash/LaMotte storyline was well done, but the Roland role was not Aaron Eckhart's finest hour. As for Paltrow . . . I'm not sure she ever had a finest hour. :shuffle: (Though I used to like her better than I do now.)

skatingfan5
02-21-2011, 11:45 PM
I'm of two minds whether to see the movie myself. The reviews I've read said that the Ash/LaMotte storyline was well done, but the Roland role was not Aaron Eckhart's finest hour. As for Paltrow . . . I'm not sure she ever had a finest hour. :shuffle: (Though I used to like her better than I do now.)That is my recollection as well -- but the Ash/LaMotte storyline had Jeremy Northam and Jennifer Ehle, so it had an unfair advantage. ;)

IceAlisa
02-21-2011, 11:49 PM
Oh, okay, then I guess you have few surprises left. :) Although I don't know how closely the movie follows the book.It seems pretty closely. I love the way the final scene was done with Jeremy Northam and the little girl. I've always disliked Jennifer Ehle's acting if only because she has just one facial expression--smug.


I'm of two minds whether to see the movie myself. The reviews I've read said that the Ash/LaMotte storyline was well done, but the Roland role was not Aaron Eckhart's finest hour. As for Paltrow . . . I'm not sure she ever had a finest hour. :shuffle: (Though I used to like her better than I do now.)

Roland was alright actually IMO but made American instead of British for economy, Paltrow's Maud was miscast IMO as was LaMotte. Jeremy Northam was very good as Ash. There are some good moments in it, I thought, with Eckhart in the fountain/cave and the last scene.

Wyliefan
02-22-2011, 12:06 AM
I've always disliked Jennifer Ehle's acting if only because she has just one facial expression--smug.


If this were the movie thread instead of the book thread, I'd argue that to the death! I think she's great.

IceAlisa
02-22-2011, 12:39 AM
If this were the movie thread instead of the book thread, I'd argue that to the death! I think she's great.

Yes, I know she has a lot of fans, especially for her role as Elizabeth Bennett. To me she is as un-Lizzy-like as can be.

I am sure it's fine to have a little thread drift. I would love to know your opinion.

Wyliefan
02-22-2011, 12:42 AM
Oh, well, basically I just think she's a marvelous actress, and as Lizzy-like as it's possible to be. :)

AYS
02-22-2011, 12:57 AM
Oh, well, basically I just think she's a marvelous actress, and as Lizzy-like as it's possible to be. :)
I've only seen her in P&P, but with that caveat, ITA. She is exactly how I'd always pictured Lizzy.

IceAlisa
02-22-2011, 01:12 AM
I have now come to the place in Possession where Val calls herself "a superfluous person", just like Blanche had done, just a few pages ago. I have to say that's a bit obvious and blunt. :rolleyes: Some authors really want to make sure the reader gets it and some don't give a flying flutz. I tend to favor the latter kind.

Wyliefan
02-22-2011, 04:21 AM
There does seem to be a lot of one-to-one matching: Roland represents Randolph, Maud is Christabel, Val is Blanche, Beatrice is Ellen. . . . Not that the relationships work out the same way (Roland would have to be in a relationship with Beatrice!) but each person in the present seems tied to one particular person in the past. Seems to me that's partly where the title comes from -- the idea of those figures beyond the grave working the strings of the people in the present, to make sure the truth comes out and in a way to re-enact their own story.

Which puts an interesting spin on Christabel's obsession with spirituality vs. Randolph's growing materialism. (One gets the sense of her, somewhere in the afterlife, saying to him, "See, I told you so!")

IceAlisa
02-22-2011, 04:33 AM
I really enjoyed the supporting cast characters of Beatrice and Ellen. Ellen in particular, with her ability to play chess well. I am at the point of the trip to Yorkshire and the discovery of the Thomasine waterfall.

As to Ash's materialism, wasn't it representative of the mid-19th century thinkers? And Christabel and Ellen displayed their own brand of cleverness, not having had the privilege of the formal education of men of the time. I prefer his poetry to Christabel's, excepting her Melusine which turns out to be in Ash's style after all.

That the relationships didn't work out the same way (thank goodness) is a testament that our times are enlightened and that history is spiral in shape--it repeats itself on a different level every time.

Wyliefan
02-22-2011, 12:51 PM
As to Ash's materialism, wasn't it representative of the mid-19th century thinkers?

I think so, yes. I was just remarking on the irony of a materialist sort of coming back to "possess" or haunt someone else after death, as Randolph seems to do.