Everything Is Nice

Beating the nice nice nice thing to death (with fluffy pillows)

Posts Tagged ‘richard yates

“Alas! when passion is both meek and wild!”

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In his introduction to his review of Revolutionary Road, Peter Bradshaw refers to the rehabilitation of the source material:

It was a novel I first opened owing to the compelling evangelism of Nick Hornby, who made one of the suicidal characters in his 2005 novel A Long Way Down carry a copy of the book, so that it could be discovered on his corpse – an inspired continuation of the books romantic, self-sacrificial agony. Hornby almost single-handedly triggered a resurgence of interest in Yates, which led very materially to the emergence of this movie, a serious and intelligent response to the novel.

Now, I’m sure Hornby helped but I would suggest the 2000 Vintage edition of the novel with Richard Ford’s evangelical introduction had rather more to do with it. By the time Hornby’s novel was published it was already canonised in Time’s All-time 100 Novels list.

Otherwise it is a good review, although perhaps he gets a bit carried away whilst describing Kate Winslet’s face later on:

Her face, so powerful in its impassivity, yet with unreadable hints of fear and anger, has something massive and monumental about it up on screen, the sculpted form of a Roman empress: like the gigantic marble head of Faustina the Elder, famously unearthed with the colossal statue of Hadrian in Turkey last year.

Written by Martin

30 January 2009 at 11:50

Dream Smaller

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Revolutionary Road was the only book of his own that Yates considered a masterpiece, regretting that he’d written it first.

Nick Laird has a great article that is nominally about the release of the Sam Mendes adaptation of Revolutionary Road but is a rich look at the way Yates’s fiction mirrored his life.

Also of interest in today’s paper: Josh Lacey reviews the second volume of Octavian Nothing, Karen Joy Fowler reviews Spirit by Gwyneth Jones and the Guardian start their 1000 novels list (on which Revolutionary Road appears.)

Written by Martin

17 January 2009 at 20:29

Posted in books, films

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