mon 22/04/2019

Bright Star | reviews, news & interviews

Bright Star

Bright Star

Young romantics: John Keats and Fanny Brawne in an ode to passion

Ben Whishaw as John Keats in 'Bright Star'

This poetic romance starts with a surprisingly prosaic image: an enormous close-up of a needle plying its trade. Surreal and (it will turn out) remarkably resonant, it sums up the director's oblique way of looking at the everyday. At first sight a decorous literary costume drama, Jane Campion's telling of the love affair between John Keats and Fanny Brawne offers us a total immersion in a world that's both familiar and fascinating, intimate and infinitely strange.

If we love we must not live as other men and women do - I cannot brook the wolfsbane of fashion and foppery and tattle. You must be mine to die upon the rack if I want you.' John Keats to Fanny Brawne, 1820.

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