Brideshead Revisted: How cinema is rewriting Evelyn Waugh’s classic

 

It is a tale of toffs, teddy bears and trouble in paradise; a saga of snobbery, sanctity and social climbing; a romance of religion, ruin and redemption. Brideshead Revisited has exerted a powerful hold on the British imagination for more than 60 years, although it's far from obvious why. Its structure is shockingly broken-backed. One of its most attractive characters disappears halfway through. An undercurrent of anti-egalitarian snobbery becomes a tidal wave.

The central love story is treated by the author like a conveyancing contract. And the characters' preoccupation with Catholicism doesn't ring true. But Brideshead has Unassailable Classic status and, as the producers of a new film have found, one mucks about with it at one's peril.

(The Independent UK)


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