If Only It Was the Picture Who was to Grow Old, and I Remain Young: The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945)

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If only it was the picture who was to grow old, and I remain young. There’s nothing in the world I wouldn’t give for that. Yes, I would give even my soul for it.

So my roommate has been reading The Picture of Dorian Gray and I decided that it was the perfect time to include a post on this film version of the book.

So The Picture of Dorian Gray is one of my favorite classics novels, and this movie did a pretty good job of keeping things pretty similar only making a few changes.

So Dorian Gray is a handsome, wealthy, young man living in 19th century England.  While he is an intelligent and educated young man he is very naive and easily manipulated. He is also a people pleaser, and easily changes his opinions and views to suit what others think.

He is having his portrait done by the accomplished artist Basil Hallward. One day, Basil’s friend Lord Henry Wotton stops by right before a painting appointment. Basil tries to get rid of his friend as he knows that Lord Henry’s cynicism will destry Dorian. In fact Basil has been trying to keep them apart for a long time now. However, it doesn’t work as Dorian shows up for his appointment while Lord Henry is still there.

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Dorian is quickly taken with Lord Henry’s “wisdom” and “philosophy”.  Lord Henry tells Dorian that the only life worth living is one dedicated entirely to pleasure. Lord Henry convinces Dorian that youth and beauty will bring him everything he desires, and that once its over his life is too.

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Dorian becomes depressed at this and nothing Basil says will help him. While Dorian is being painted he wishes that his portrait could age instead of him. He makes this statement in the presence of a certain Egyptian statue, which supposedly has the power to grant wishes. (In the book, there is no mention of an Egyptian statue, in fact in the book they never explain how he stays young forever.)

Dorian’s wish is granted and his soul is transferred to the painting. Now the painting ages instead of him.

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Now that Dorian is only after beauty and pleasure he goes and visits a tavern and falls in love with Sybil Vane, a singer/entertainer. (In the book she was an actress who performed wonderfully and Dorian fell in love with her acting). Dorian hasn’t told Sybil what his name is yet, she refers to him as Sir Tristan her knight. Sybil is played by Angela Lansbery. Donna Reed really wanted this part, but was given Gladys instead.

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Unfortunately, when Lord Henry finds out he is none too pleased. He gives Sybil a “virtue test” which she fails. (In the book Sybil couldn’t pretend to suffer or be in love with her fellow actors as all her love and emotion for Dorian eclipsed them).

The next morning, Lord Henry informs Dorian that Sibyl killed herself. Dorian is freaked out and feels guilty but copies his mentor Lord Henry and acts indifferent. He goes to the opera right after and lives it up. That night, Dorian sees a change in the portrait.  It now has a cruel look to him and Dorian hides it away, afraid that others will see it.  He continues his sinful and heartless life.

Time passes by and Dorian is now entering into his 40th birthday. He still looks as young and beautiful as ever. The painting has now become atrocious and is locked away from everyone. Dorian has even gotten rid of his old servants who might see it.
Ivan Le Lorraine Albright's famous painting of the decayed Dorian Gray - which took approximately one year to complete - is now owned by the Art Institute of Chicago, where it has been on display for many years.

Ivan Le Lorraine Albright’s famous painting of the decayed Dorian Gray – which took approximately one year to complete – is now owned by the Art Institute of Chicago, where it has been on display for many years.

I can’t reveal the rest of the film as if you haven’t read the book it will give away the ending. You should definitely read the book and check out this film.
One thing that is extremely different about this film is that they add an additional relationship. In the movie Basil has a niece, Gladys (played by Donna Reed), that has always had a crush on Dorian and now that he remains young and she has gotten older they are able to connect.
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What else is really interesting is that the movie is black and white except for four times when Dorian Gray’s picture is shown in color.
Sorry to end so abruptly but I’m telling ya that you need to check the ending out for yourself. I would hate myself for ruining it for anyone out there.
Here’s a cover page I made for my facebook this year for my countdown to Halloween.
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For more on Oscar Wilde, go to The Two Times to be Over

A Fright on Halloween Night: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (1949)

You can’t reason with a headless man.

As a kid I remember that this movie used to scare the bejeezus out of me. The headless horseman was uber creepy.

Ghosts are bad, but the one that’s cursed,
Is the Headless Horseman; he’s the worst!

But the film was amazing!

One reason why it was so fantastic was that they had the very handsome, and very charming Bing Crosby be the narrator and singer.

I love this man!

He doesn’t even have to show his face, just listening to his sexy voice is enough for me.

So Disney actually manages to do an extremely good job and creating a fun, but still creepy children’s film. They also managed to keep the story very similar to the short story, in fact taking pieces from the actual text and placing it in the film.

FYI Spoiler Alert

So the cartoon starts out with the classic Disney opening:

All fairy tales or films based on short stories and novels used to open with the pages of a book. I miss that opening and wish they portrayed it in more films. I know they brought it back for Enchanted, but I still wish there was more of it.

The first person we are introduced to is Brom Bones

I never liked Brom. He always seemed like a jerk to me. He was big and brawny, “handsome” to some; but a mean bully. He reminds me of a lesser cool Gaston. (I love Gaston, even though he is a jerk. His song is awesome)

I mean he gives liquor to animals. That’s abuse right there.

Anyways, Brom is shocked at the appereance of a new man in town. In fact this stranger suprises everyone. It’s Ichabod, Ichabod Crane the school teacher.

“Debonair and devil-may-care
It’s the new schoolmaster
What’s his name
Ichabod!
Ichabod Crane!”

He’s tall, rail thin, and has one heck of a schnozza; but I always liked him better as he was well-read and not a loser like Brom.

Icabod also loves to eat. He goes to his student’s homes to partake in their food, making it a complete part of his lifestyle.

Even though Ichabod isn’t really a looker he still has all the girls in town’s hearts a flutter.

With a voice like Bing Crosby’s who could blame them?

This of course upsets Brom, who tries his best to prank Ichabod and make him seem dumb.

Next to enter the scene is the lovely Katrina Van Tassel. Not only is she the prettiest in the town, but her father is the richest man.

“Narrator: Oh, Katrina, my love. Who can resist your grace, your charm? And who can resist your father’s farm? Boy, what a set-up! There’s gold in them acres…Dear Katrina, my love, my treasure. Treasure? Ah, that barn’s a gold mine. How I’d love to hit the jackpot. Sweet Katrina, Papa’s only child. Papa? Well, the old goat can’t take it with him, and when he cuts out, that’s where I cut in.” 

Every guy in town wants to get with Katrina, Ichabod included. The only problem is that Brom is interested in Katrina, in fact he is planning on marrying her. Katrina however is enjoying the attention of Ichabod. She likes the fact that he is so different from anyone she’s ever met.

Ichabod is able to to best Brom in every way, by using his brain over brawn.

However, Ichabod is a very superstitous person. We saw in his song how he doesn’t like black cats, walking under ladders, salt over the shoulder, etc.

Brom catches on to this and tells a horrific story about the Headless Horseman.

“Brom Bones: [singing] When the ghosts have a midnight jamboree, they break it up with fiendish glee. Ghosts are bad, but the one that’s cursed, is the Headless Horseman; he’s the worst! 
Chorus: [singing] That’s right, he’s a fright on Halloween night! 
Brom Bones: When he goes a-jogging across the land, holding his noggin in his hand, demons take one look and groan, and they hit the road for parts unknown!…I’m telling you, brother, it’s a frightful sight for what goes on Halloween night.” 

Its midnight and Halloween, and after hearing the story, Ichabod is doubly freaked out on his walk home.

Of course on his way home he runs into THE HEADLESS HORSEMAN!

 “Next morning, Ichabod’s hat was found, and close beside it, a shattered pumpkin, but there was no trace of the schoolmaster. It was shortly thereafter that Brom Bones led the fair Katrina to the altar. Now, rumors persisted that Ichabod was still alive, married to a wealthy widow in a distant county. But of course, the settlers refused to believe such nonsense, for they knew the schoolmaster had been spirited away by the Headless Horseman.”

I always thought that the horseman was Brom and not a ghost, but I like how they end it so that you can draw your own conculsion as to what has really happened.

Hope you enjoyed this hair-raising tale. More to come!

Here is a cover page I made for my facebook for my Halloween countdown

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To go to the beginning of Horrorfest, go to I Don’t Belong in the World

For the previous post, go to They’re Here

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For more on Disney Animated Films, go to The World’s Greatest Criminal Mind

For more on Disney, go to Doors of Death

By George He’s Perfect

So Mr. Knightly is perfect for me.

It’s not that big of a surprise for me. 😀 Mr. Knightly is so awesome! He is kind, caring, and it is sooo romantic how he is willing to give up his only chance for true love and happiness because he thinks he isn’t right for Emma. He thinks he’s too old, but I think he’s perfect. I mean he travels through any element to be by Emma’s side; he’s better than the post office.

Mr. Knightly is also wise and an excellent judge of character. After all he is the one to figure out who likes who. The only one he was wrong on was when he thought Emma didn’t care for him. However, he was the only one to figure out the Jane-Frank debacle. He is also always the voice of reason, he is able to stop arguments, along with being able to calmly resolve any situation. For example the fear of being snowed in at the Westons, the canceling of Box Hill, or how to be able to marry Emma but not take her away from her father.

Mr. Knightly is also the perfect gentleman. He cares for Mr. Woodhouse, because he is so in love with Emma He makes sure that Mr. Weston is protected from John Knightly’s vicious tongue. (For more on John Knightly) He also makes sure that Mr. Woodhouse has plenty to occupy himself with during any parties, so that Emma can have time to enjoy herself. He is also willing to give up his home, routine, etc and move in with the Woodhouses, so that Mr. Woodhouse and Emma won’t have to be separated.

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He also uses his carriage to pick up Miss Bates and Jane so that they don’t have to walk in the cold. How caring and sweet is that!

One of the things I really love about the Mr. Knightly and Emma relationship is how comfortable they are with each other. Since they were friends first, they can really talk to each other along with teasing. This same relationship is seen in Northanger Abbey, and I love it in there as well. All the other Jane Austen relationships don’t have this same kind of closeness.

We know that K is handsome as he has a “tall, firm, upright figure…” Being tall was very important in this time. More info on this later.

He is also an amazing dancer. One of my favorite parts:

“Whom are you going to dance with?’
‘With you, if you will ask me.’
‘Will you?’
‘Indeed i will. you have shewn[sic] that you can dance, and you know we are not really so much brother and sister as to make it improper’
Brother and sister! no, indeed”

I agree when Emma says that he  is “superior..to every other being upon earth…”

I simply LOVED the end of the novel! He gives such a great proposal!

“My dearest Emma…for dearest you will always be, whatever the event of this hour’s conversation, my dearest, most beloved Emma…”

Click here , here, and here for the different movie scenes that show it.

“Within half an hour, he had passed from a thoroughly distressed state of mind, to something so like perfect happiness, that it could bear no other name.”

“She was his own Emma, by hand and word, when they returned into the house; and if he could have thought of Frank Churchill then, he might have deemed him a good sort of fellow.”

Before I read the book I didn’t really care about Mr. Knightly; after reading it I fell head over heels in love with him. Now he is one of my main Austen men. (Coming soon, a post of my rankings of the Austen men). I would recommend any Austenite out there to read and watch the films they are all very good.

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If you want to know who your Austen dream guy is; go here.

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For more on Mr. Knightly, go to A Halloween Hello from the Austen Men

For more on Emma, go to Bad Penny

For more quizzes, go to Frozen Solid 

Cinderelly, Cinderelly

 I’ve been thinking of changing my name to Cinderella

I know this has nothing to do with Jane Austen, but lately I’ve been feeling just like her. It’s the start of a new school year, and I’ve been feeling a little overloaded, and have been forgetting things all over the place.

Oh No!

Seriously last Thursday I went to five different areas around campus and left my thermos in those five different places. Instead of a handsome prince returning it to me,  I instead had to go get it myself, my own fault lately. I don’t know where my head has been lately.

Then on Friday I went to the library, and was almost out of there when I realized I had left my water bottle behind. Once again I had to go back.

Now I have to check my belongings three times before I vacate an area in fear of having lost another item. Such is my life!

Well at least I’m not having as bad a day as Sam Winchester

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For more on Cinderella, go to What’s Your Line

For more on Disney, go to Bowled Over

For more on other modern day happenings, go to Where Oh Where Can It Be?

For more on Supernatural, go to Crushworthy Look

For more on bad days, go to Just One of Those Days…Nights…No Days