Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Some thrilling reads coming to a theater near you

As the spring into summer movie season begins, the usual batch of blockbuster fare is set to arrive at multiplexes everywhere and while many of those big budget action packed films will be worth watching, some smaller yet sinister cinema will be waiting in the wings as well.

Those thriller flicks will also offer a slow burn in their story lines as several of them are based on books such as The Dinner by Herman Koch. The plot setting is simple as two families(made up of Richard Gere,Rebecca Hall,Steve Coogan and Laura Linney) get together at a prestigious restaurant for more than just a meal.

As it turns out, each family has a teenage son,both of whom got into serious trouble that could affect not only their futures but the political aspirations of one of their fathers and the social standing of the other. With the dining atmosphere getting more toxic with each course, some ugly truths are placed on the table for all to reluctantly savor.

This novel is translated from the original Dutch and I hope that the American film version does as good of a job adapting to the big screen. We shall soon see as the movie is due to hit theaters this May and if not, the book will certainly be around for some page turning dark delights:

Next, we have Tulip Fever by Deborah Moggach(best known for The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel) which takes us back to Amsterdam of the 1630s. The title flower is the hot ticket item amongst the well-to-do folk yet merchant Cornelius Sandvoot(Christoph Waltz) finds his young bride Sophia(Alicia Vikander) to be more of a prize worth displaying.

To that end, he commissions a portrait of her by up and coming artist Jan Van Loos(Dane DeHaan) that also features the popular flower. However, Sophia and Jan wind up falling in love and their plans to be together take a rather deadly turn. With Tom Stoppard adapting the screenplay, the tense story telling should make for a smartly steamy late summer treat:

 To go forward into more modern times, Dave Eggers' The Circle has an eager young heroine, Mae Holland(Emma Watson) who is excited to be taking her first job at a major league internet company.

That company, run by the charismatic Eamon Bailey(Tom Hanks), seems to the ideal work place that treats it's staff like family. As Mae rises through the ranks, she gets more of an inside look into how certain policies are enforced through online surveillance and cutting off actual family ties.

As Mae grows disenchanted with the company and worried that their influence could actually threaten the world, she joins forces with a fellow co-worker(John Boyega) to find a way to break the growing power of The Circle. Quite a few real world issues are touched upon here, which ought to make both the book and film a little extra eerie to say the least this spring:

While it'll be fun to watch some of our favorite superheroes(I am especially looking forward to Wonder Woman) and science fiction epics at the movies this season, it is nice to know that a few down to earth chillers will be available on the cinematic menu.

Even a remake like My Cousin Rachel is a welcome sight to see. Based on the Daphne Du Maurier novel, it was first adapted into film in 1952 and starred Richard Burton and Olivia deHavillard as the leads. The movie received several Oscar nominations and a Golden Globe win for Burton.

This new version has Sam Clafin playing Phillip, a young man who is wary of his recently deceased cousin's wife(Rachel Weisz) who may or may not have contributed to her husband's death. How well it will stand up to it's adaptation ancestor remains to be seen yet one thing is true both then and now-that the book itself is the true winner for audiences of every generation:

1 comment:

JaneGS said...

What a good set of movies--I loved The Dinner and think it will make a marvelous movie, especially with Laura Linney (one of my favorite actresses). Tulip Fever and The Circle also sound terrific, and I love My Cousin Rachel, and I've not seen the Richard Burton version, so this will be a real treat.