Certainly it would if it were done in the spirit of Stephen Fry's new film, based on Evelyn Waugh's Vile Bodies (1930), which has been called the funniest English novel of the century. Five or six books by Wodehouse may outrank it, but never mind; what's striking about the Fry version is how clearly he sees the underlying sadness. Until a few years ago he was a Bright Young Thing himself, and there may be elements of autobiography lurking here somewhere. \"What a lot of parties!\" one of the exhausted young things sighs late one night.
Jim Broadbent pops up regularly as a perpetually drunken army officer who makes extravagant promises to Adam, gives him tips on race horses (\"Indian Runner at 37 to 1\"), promises him money, disappears for months at a time, seems likely to be a fraud, and always remembers what he said when he was loaded, even though that may be of no help to Adam. The only character who doesn't really fit in is Mrs. Ape (Stockard Channing), a religious zealot whose appeal to bright young things is questionable, especially while she sings \"Ain't No Flies on the Lamb of God.\"
Her sensibility may have something in common with that of Stephen Fry, the actor and novelist. \"My first words, as I was being born,\" he reportedly said, \"[were when] I looked up at my mother and said, 'That's the last time I'm going up one of those.'\" At any rate, Fry saw other similarities between the milieu of his own youth as \"a party animal in the 80s\" and the cynical and debauched glamour of the bright, young people in London at the twilight of the Jazz Age, featured in Vile Bodies. He wrote a screenplay based on the novel and is making his directorial debut with it, under the title Bright Young Things. Two relative unknowns, Emily Mortimer and Stephen Campbell Moore, play Nina and Adam, but one can anticipate a spate of deliciously wicked cameos from Peter O'Toole, Margaret Tyzack, Simon Callow, Sir John Mills, Stockard Channing, and Dan Aykroyd.
By the way, it's interesting to note the reference in the lyrics to \"A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square,\" a 1915 romantic standard that would surely be quite familiar to the characters Neil is singing about. Another of Neil's lines from the song, \"Nancy's got a monkey on a silver chain,\" has its origins not with the novel but rather with a letter written by Waugh at around the same time, describing someone he observed \"with a pet monkey on a silver harness.\" Neil has said that \"Nancy\" is Nancy Cunard, a British writer and activist who was indeed part of that betwixt-the-wars \"smart set.\" And the line about a character named Stephen—who, after all, has a camera—could be an \"in joke\" reference to the film's director, Mr. Fry himself. But, as one of my site visitors insightfully noted, later confirmed by Neil himself in the Format booklet, it more directly alludes to Stephen Tennant (1906-87), another prominent \"bright young thing\" who is generally recognized as having served as one of the models for Sebastian Flyte in Waugh's Brideshead Revisited. Given their common surnames (though no relation), could Neil resist
I'm sorry for the lack of posts lately. This is what happens when you're stuck in a small town and the recent storms have knocked out your local internet service. But I think things are somewhat back to normal now so I can return to bombarding you with beautiful images of beautiful people from beautiful films. Hurrah!- - - -Bright Young Things is Stephen Fry's screen adaptation (and I stress \"adaptation\" since the endings are very different) from Evelyn Waugh's 1930 novel Vile Bodies. It takes place during 1930s London and revolves around the decadent, cocaine-fueled lives of the young social elite. It's party party party fun fun fun all the time.The film is visually breathtaking and these elaborate costume balls really do look like they'd be loads of fun to attend!Stephen Fry stayed true to the disjointed style of the Evelyn Waugh's novel by making the film just as structurally fragmented, which, if you haven't read the book, might prove to be a formidable task to follow. But there is a story in there somewhere and it centers mainly around a young aspiring writer Adam (Stephen Campbell Moore, whom I've been smitten with since The History Boys) and his attempts to secure enough money to marry his longtime girlfriend Nina (Emily Mortimer). It's kind of a romantic comedy but then again, it's really not. In the meantime, there's a lot of partying, cocaine snorting, and fun outings to the racetracks with their absolutely hilarious and totally scene stealing group of friends, namely Miles (Michael Sheen) and Agatha (Fenella Woolgar).below: Stephen Campbell Moore as Adam. Loving - the yellow check scarf and the green tie combo.below: Emily Mortimer as Adam's girlfriend Nina. Loving - her jade-like green drop earrings.below: the happy couple at the racetracks. Loving - his loud yellow sweater vest and her classic brown checked blazer with the pin on the lapel.below: Loving - the fur coat and the burgundy wrist-length gloves. below: my two favorite supporting characters, Miles and Agatha. Loving - her tendency to wear masculine clothes, her yellow tie and tweed pant suit and his matching yellow vest and luxurious camel colored wool coat. Seriously, that coat looked amazing on screen. These images don't do it justice. Yes, Agatha wears suits a lot. Here she is in a tux. Loving - the beret, dark sunglasses, and black & white checked blazer over the heavy cream cable knit sweater.Loving - Agatha's cool, chic ensemble. The leather jacket, shirt, and tie may appear masculine at first but the pink scarf and the black+white striped gloves give it that feminine touch. below: Miles' lover/race car driver. Loving - the pairing of dark gray tweeds with the hunter green cap.Here are a few other notable characters who pop in and out of the fragmented storyline. A delicious James McAvoy makes a short-lived appearance as the young Lord Balcairn, gossip columnist for a local newspaper.David Tennant (of Dr. Who fame) has plays a part as well. Loving - his ivory pipe!below: I forgot who she is but she throws a big party in the movie. Loving - her necklace with the large red beads.below: one-armed driver. I posted this image because I liked how his empty sleeve is pinned against his chest, which is a much better alternative than letting it hang loose.Oh yeah, Stockard Channing also has a small role as the director for a traveling girls' choir. Doesn't she look fabulous in the salmon colored dress suit with that opulent white fur trim!Now we move onto some of the interior sets:Nina's eccentric father - Colonel Blount - is played by the legendary Peter O'Toole. His on-screen time is not very long but what a memorable character he created! Below is the exterior to his mammoth country manor.Loving his little red hat and the gray robe stuffed with the front pocket stuffed with tissues. How delightful and eccentric. And lest you thought he wasn't properly dressed, notice his shirt and tie underneath! Also - loving the collection of curiosities cluttering the interior of his house. Notice the giant horn.The Colonel tells young Adam to hang his coat on that dragon statue to the left. below: Notice the Tiger's head almost completely buried under that clutter of books.Another shot of the mess cluttered on the long table in his study.Novacheck blanket casually thrown on the back of a broken chair.Another interesting interior set is Nina's glamourous apartment. It's done up in mostly soft creams and lavenders. Notice the large shimmery wall piece by the front entry. It looks like small mosaic tiles strung/glued together. Love.Loving - the silver telephone and her silk embroidered robe. Here's another shot of the robe, with a slightly better view of the embroidery details.And this is kind of random but below is a shot of the a grand hall in preparations for a big party. I wanted to show the massive floral hanging fixtures because I think they're amazing.Overall Bright Young Things was an enjoyable film but it wasn't without flaws. I think some of the actors were miscast. I understand that it's tremendously difficult to convey the depth of Waugh's writing into something visibly tangible but I just feel like the witty, detached, reckless nonchalance of the characters were all too apparently forced. (This doesn't apply to Woolgar and Sheen, who were both perfect). It's not particularly a long movie (ringing in about 1.5hrs) but for some reason it felt a bit long, especially toward the end when the characters' lives begin to fall apart. And speaking of falling apart, a lot of events weren't made clear unless you've read the book or you're knowledgeable about the laws of the period. And then, of course, there's fragmented structure of the whole thing, which can get a bit disorienting. But visually - what a feast!! And that's the main reason why I decided to post about it to begin with.
Bright Young Things is a 2003 British period comedy-drama film written and directed by Stephen Fry. The screenplay was based on the 1930 novel Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh, which was in turn loosely based on and satirized the aristocratic and bohemian society members known as the \"bright young people\".
The film follows aspiring author Adam Fenwick-Symes and his fiancee Nina Blount. His novel Bright Young Things is withheld at customs for being too racy, and he finds himself in a precarious financial situation and fearing he will be unable to marry. Meanwhile, he and Nina live life as part of a young and decadent crowd who indulge in partying, alcohol, cocaine and gossip. However, things are not as carefree as they may seem at first. 59ce067264