Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Hedgehog

Although this movie was made only a year ago, I am confident that almost no one here saw it and so I am counting it as a forgotten movie.

It was a wonderful film that did justice to the novel on which it was based. I think one mistake was in changing the title, which made it even less familiar to those who read Muriel Barbery's fantastic novel, THE ELEGANCE OF THE HEDGEHOG.

Mona Achache directed this charming, sad, realistic story of an eleven-year old girl who is bored beyond reason, Rene, the superintendent in her building, who is secretly the world's most prolific reader, and the Japanese gentleman who moves in upstairs, The three kindred souls befriend each other.

The book was somewhat richer, but only because it was able to convey the Super's inner thoughts about her reading material. Other than that is was a nearly perfect transition from page to screen. But no one saw it. Please do.

What is your favorite print to screen translation?


Anonymous said...

Not only haven't I seen it, I hadn't even heard of it before.

Jeff M.

John said...

Did it get a wide release in the US? I only came across it in our video store a few weeks ago. Only one copy and it was out. Now I'll have to rent it for sure. Thanks, Patti.

pattinase (abbott) said...

No, even here, where we have three art houses, it came and went in a week or two. The novel has a wider audience. My library had it.

Sergio (Tipping My Fedora) said...

I had no idea there was a movie version, thanks Pati. I really want to see this one as my Dad loved the novel and it's unusual for him to rave about fiction.


Todd Mason said...

That's why I call this Overlooked A/V, rather than Forgotten...too much isn't even put forward sufficiently for it to be forgotten...this sounds charming.

Is this Your favorite adaptation, Patti? I'm not sure I can cite a single favorite, but among them would be the Kubrick and company reworking of PATHS OF GLORY and RED ALERT (the latter as DR. STRANGELOVE) for film.

Richard R. said...

For me, it's a shame the film is subtitled, as I have a very difficult time with them. I read the text at the bottom, scene after scene, realizing at some point that I have SEEN nothing of the film because I had to read it. At least the book appears to be in English. If the library here has it, I'll give it a try.

pattinase (abbott) said...

The book is translated. You have to be a bit patient because some of the first bits are about the books she is reading. And then it begins.
I don't know if it's my favorite. In some cases--like THE GODFATHER-the movie is better than the book (IMHO). And the recent TRUE GRIT was pretty fine.

Anonymous said...

I reserved the book from the library. I agree the last TRUE GRIT was a terrific adaptation. I'll try and think of others. Both THE GODFATHER and JAWS were better than the books. The third (1941) MALTESE FALCON was (of course) a wonderful job, and I liked the Dick Powell MURDER, MY SWEET (Chandler's FAREWELL, MY LOVELY) with Mike Mazurki's definitive portrayal of Moose Malloy.

Jeff M.

John said...

I didnt' see that question at the end the first time. Best adapatation of a novel to the screen I think is TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD - it perfectly captures the essence of Lee's book with vivid imagery, suberb acting and storytelling and one of the most evocative music socres in all of cinema.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Oh, yes. So respectful of the text.