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He’s back!

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I found him under my bedside table when I was trying to find my missing highlighters (I swear I bought a package of four…). He was most seriously displeased. Angry, even.

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(He insisted that we re-create the image of him under the table. Oh, the injustice!)

Anyway. I made it up to him by taking him out to the movies. I took a vocal rest day today (I’m pretty sure my only words have been “Un café crème, s’il vous plaît!”), so what better to do than go see the 1943 Orson Welles/Joan Fontaine Jane Eyre at Le Champollion?

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The Champollion shows classic movies in both French and English (but always in the version originale, with subtitles if necessary). We had, as usual, tons of time to kill, so Angry Bird and I went window shopping and wandering around in the 5ème arrondissement.

Look, it’s the Panthéon!

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And the Sorbonne!

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Angry Bird wanted his picture taken in front of the Sorbonne.

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Don’t you think it makes him look smarter?

This is Michel de Montaigne.

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And this is Angry Bird and Michel de Montaigne’s foot.

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Now Angry Bird is working on an inferiority complex. Along with his anger.

The movie theater was extremely comfortable. If it hadn’t been a movie I was interested in (and if I hadn’t had that café crème beforehand), I would have fallen asleep. The seats were deep and soft, and it was the best heated indoor location I’ve encountered in two months.

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Angry Bird agrees.

The movie was very good, although of course I have some opinions. I think Orson Welles is probably my favorite Rochester–and I’ve seen them all except William Hurt (I love William Hurt and I don’t want my opinion of him to be ruined by bad casting). Tall, brooding, dark, oddly attractive but definitely not conventionally handsome, and that VOICE. He definitely brings the crazy as well; this is clearly a Rochester who has a “madwoman in the attic” in more ways than one (sorry, spoiler alert?). The film spent more time than most of them do on the Lowood years, possibly because of a pre-National Velvet Elizabeth Taylor as Helen Burns. It sort of made me sad that they kept Mr. Brocklehurst around, because that meant that Jane was escaping from the horrors of the school when she left to go to Thornfield; in the book she has an interesting conflict regarding that decision, because she does feel reasonably happy and useful there by the end of ten years, despite having the “urge for going.” Anyway. Jane’s time at Thornfield was thrilling; the chemistry between the two leads was great, even though Fontaine had little to do except look stunning and luminous in closeups.

They did cut out St. John Rivers (though there was a Doctor Rivers at Lowood who I imagine was created in homage to the lost St. John) and the gypsy, which very few adaptations manage. I did enjoy the little scene they added for Rochester and Blanche Ingram, where he basically lays out for her the reasons she wants to marry him and totally insults her so that she will leave. The proposal scene was creepy and insane (including a bolt of lightning rending a tree in half and Orson Welles chewing the scenery a whole lot), but they left in the bit about how Rochester feels like he has a string under his left rib connected to a corresponding point on Jane’s person, and if they were separated, he would take to bleeding inwardly…and then they didn’t even kiss (though they did at the end). All in all, a really smart movie that ends up not being much about Jane Eyre at all, because of the sheer force that is Orson Welles.

And now Angry Bird and I are back in my room, eating soup and bread and pondering our next move. I’m thinking Grey’s Anatomy. Angry Bird can’t believe I’m still invested in this show. (But it’s a “what if” episode and Addison comes back!)

Bisous,
Anne

P.S. I have movie plans with a real person tomorrow–Heather and I are going to see The Artist!

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