Tuesday, 25 January, 2022

Orlando: A Visual And Textual Treat

 OrlandoQuentin Crisp I studied both the book and the film as part of a course that was looking at how books were converted into film. I have to admit that I had previously found Virginia Woolf to be quite a difficult writer to get into and I know that I am not alone in this. Orlando was a wonderful read though — the central character is so charismatic and the philosophy behind the novel is so resonant that you can’t help but be pulled into the fantasy. All of the things that Orlando goes through seem so real and natural that you do not question them. Given the nature of said changes you might have found them to be a stumbling block in a film of the text, were it not handled with such visual flair and sensitivity. Orlando is a chameleon surrounded by chameleons. Sally Potter’s film is stunning — as ornate as you would want; as overwhelming as you might expect. Tilda Swinton gives the performance of her career. I think that the film, like the book, is the auteur/ author’s masterpiece. A cohesive and complete vision that the viewer / reader can become completely immersed in. A richly imagined beautiful world where no boundaries are as solid as one might believe. As a possibly interesting aside, the presence of Quentin Crisp as Queen Elizabeth The First is a possible reference to the legend of the Bisley Boy which might be considered as an interesting model for the idea of Orlando. —————- Now playing: Blur – Mellow Song via FoxyTunes

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