The Woman in Black is a 1983 book written by Susan Hill that has been adapted for the screen twice. The second, starring Daniel Radcliffe, is from 2012 and is better known. This is the first, the 1989 British adaptation directed by Herbert Wise with a screenplay by Nigel Kneale. It stars Adrian Rawlins (who played James Potter in the Harry Potter films); David Daker (who was in some of the 70s-era Doctor Who shows, and in Time Bandits); and Pauline Moran (who played Miss Lemon in the David Suchet Poirot series) as the woman in black. This is a wonderful movie -good character development and plotting, evocative atmosphere. If you ask me, this is a better effort than the Radcliffe movie, though I liked that one, too. This one just seems to have more, somehow. This version is reported to be more faithful to the novel, but -not having read it- I'll have to take others' word for that.
BFI Screen Online gives it a positive review and says Pauline Moran "proves utterly mesmerising as the grimacing and malevolent ghost" Ferdy on Film calls it "one of the few truly successful examples of pure mood-piece horror made in the past quarter century, all the more admirable for being a telemovie, made with the no-nonsense sense of functional craft that distinguished British television for so many years" and says it's "genuinely chilling". Horrorpedia says, "It is deliberately subtle and aims to be creepy rather than terrifying and explicit" and "anyone who enjoyed the newer film –or admires the novel– would certainly find worth their while."
Because this blog does not consist of a single focus topic I chose the name Divers and Sundry where "Divers" means being of many and various kinds, and "Sundry" means consisting of a haphazard assortment of different kinds.
The movie looks amazing. I read the book and ended up feeling unsatisfied, but I think that's because I didn't enter entirely into the spirit of it. It would work so much better as a film. Wow! Must see if I can get hold of a copy.ReplyDelete
I do hope you like it. I prefer the eerie, creepy ghost stories over the slasher movies, and this one suited my taste.Delete
I had forgotten how you love to post these ghost, horror, and even monster films and books during October leading up to Halloween. Chilling entry today.ReplyDelete
I'm a latecomer to the horror genre, and there's so much out there!Delete
I have seen this in the theatre in London, maybe 15 years ago (or 20, time flies). Scary piece! I have the Radcliffe-film on the dvd-player, but haven´t seen it yet. It´ll be just the thing for All Saints, after my exam; I´ll have three whole days of leisure! This film looks good, great actors!ReplyDelete
I saw the Radcliffe version first and enjoyed it, too. I love the ghost stories.. 3 days! What a treat! :)Delete