I'm popping into Moe's blog column to look at the many faces of Wuthering Heights on dvd. Each adaptation of Emily Bronte's novel has its own attractions, and we have five to compare here at the library. Is WH a story of eternal love or the annals of the world's most dysfunctional relationship? You tell me. Pick your favorite craggy Heathcliff and moorswept Catherine and away you go...
BBC Wuthering Heights CPL just introduced this 1967 version starring Ian McShane (Lovejoy, Deadwood). You'd be hard pressed to find a hairier Heathcliff.
Wuthering Heights starring Timothy Dalton (1970): This version is true to the novel and the setting is darkly appropriate. It emphasizes how the family dynamic leads to all the conflicts between the players.
Masterpiece Theatre's 1998 Wuthering Heights: Heathcliff is not a nice man in this tv version. The focus is his and Cathy's obsession with one another and the ensuing destruction they wreak around them--starring Orla Brady and Robert Cavanah. It's a compelling adapdation and my favorite of the ones listed here.
Wuthering Heights (1992) with Juliette Binoche and Ralph Fiennes. If you ask me, these two are just too nice looking for these roles, but they are fine actors.
Masterpiece Theatre strikes again with Tom Hardy and Charlotte Riley in Wuthering Heights (2008). This one will appeal to younger viewers, with younger actors, but it didn't sustain my interest.
You can't beat the cast in this 1939 version with Laurence Olivier, Merle Oberon and David Niven. However, it is not true to the novel's plot or feeling and is largely responsible for Wuthering Heights' dubious designation as a romance novel. It is not in our collection yet.
This could become the blog post that never ends...according to IMDB, two new versions are on their way. I'm still trying to find the tv version with the very affected blond Edgar Linton...anyone?