Over the years I have read this book probably 10 times, and have seen at least 5 versions of the movie at least 3 times each.
This morning, I stumbled across the two part PBS version which I had never seen. Seeing as it was only 6:30 a.m., and way to early to work outside, I decided to make a pot of Amaretto coffee, and watch the entire thing on the couch, in my jammies, in one sitting.
The PBS production (Masterpiece Theater) is a beautiful rendition, with wonderful costuming, realistic setting and perfect casting. I do believe out of all the productions (PBS, BBC, Hollywood, etc.) this is my favorite - as of today. And may I add - Tom Hardy's "Heathcliff," is the delicious epitome my tragic hero.
While working toward my Bachelor's in World Literature at NC State, I wrote an honors paper on Heathcliff as a tragic vs. Byronic hero. To this day, I still cannot, with complete conviction, slip him into either category. I really think it depends upon what version you are reading or watching, and who is playing Heathcliff that pushes him in one direction or the other.
I recall Sabrina telling me once that she was of the opinion I rated the movie versions of Wuthering Heights, " according to the degree of "hotness" of Heathcliff." "That's ridiculous," I remembered quipping. I laughed and pretended I was amused by her comment, but secretly I was insulted.
Interestingly, with my viewing of this most recent version of the story, I find myself thinking...
Hmmmmm, could Sabrina be right? Could I possibly be THAT shallow that I base my "educated" opinion of this movie upon the, as she puts it, "hotness" of Heathcliff.
I feel the need to reflect.
Let's see, the four productions and Heathcliffs that immediately come to mind are:
Sir Lawrence Olivier;
Timothy Dalton (left); and
Ok, now, let's rate them according to how good I thought the movie was:
Ralph Finnes ---- good
Sir Lawrence Olivier -- really good
Timothy Dalton -- even better
Tom Hardy -- THE BEST
Now let's add the Heathcliff rating:
Ralph Finnes ---- warm
Sir Lawrence Olivier -- hot
Timothy Dalton -- really hot
Tom Hardy -- super HOT
OMG......Sabrina was right.
I AM SHALLOW. I AM BASING MY OPION OF THE MOVIE UPON HEATHCLIFF'S HOTNESS. I'm disgusting.
Oh well. Sorry Timothy. You are a good Heathcliff, and it has been good while it lasted. But there's a new Heathcliff in town.
At least.... for now.
At least.... for now.