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Fêted British writer/director Andrea Arnold effects a brave leap from the urban, contemporary setting of
, to Emily Brontë's beloved rural 19th-century love story. It's an earthy, elemental dramatisation, with a stripped back screenplay by the director and Olivia Hetreed. You can almost smell the Yorkshire moors in the weather-beaten locations, shot in shallow focus so that we can seemingly reach out and touch every hair on a horse's head, every snagged thread of wool on a thistle. With detailed natural sound design, no score and a young, unknown cast - Shannon Beer and Solomon Glave are particularly striking as the young Cathy and Heathcliff (who, in this provocative version, is black) - Arnold chases the action, handheld, like a
movie. It's a boldly modernist approach designed to irritate purists, and although it's pleasingly tactile, it's perhaps too avant garde; its fractured narrative and glimpses of lens flare constantly break the spell of the period fiction.
A Yorkshire hill farmer takes pity on a homeless boy, and brings him back to his remote estate on the moors. The new arrival and the farmer's daughter develop an obsessive bond as they grow up, but he is ultimately cast out by her brother. He returns years later, seeking to be reunited with his lost love and to avenge himself on her family. Period drama, starring James Howson and Kaya Scodelario.
Cast & Crew
Swearing and violence.
DVD and Blu-ray
11 Nov 2011
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