Compare ; contrast the two videos (1967, 1998) of ‘Far from the Madding’

1967 Film:

This is not only a film for rich enjoyment, but a film of cherish. Many good actors star in a sweeping melodrama set in Thomas Hardy’s home, the Wessex county.

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Bathseba is the beautiful county lass who breaks the hearts and minds of them who seek her love.

1998 Film:

This film is an evocative and sumptuous new adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s classic novel set the 19th Century. It is a wonderful successor to the original film over 30 years ago. It is a destructive tale with all the familiar Hardy themes of the trail and the pair of love, yet it is also one of his most humorous.

Casting of the Characters

Over the years from 1967 to 1998 there have been many changes in the acting world, but that doesn’t mean that the style of the characters changes. The actors from the 1967 film, I think, play their part closer to the book. For starters, Mr. Boldwood looks much older than he actually is in the 1998 video but in the 1967 video he looks the part and plays the closer part to the book. Another thing is that Bathseba is more authentic and traditional on the 1967 video. I think she looks better and has a better voice. She also had the right looks for a country lass.

In the first and second video I feel that Troy is very similar and both stay close to the book. I also feel that farmer Oak is better in better in the 1998 film. This because his appearance is closer to the image I had in my mind from the book. I think that he is also a better actor than the actor from the 1967 video.

Overall I think that in the 1967 video the actors have the looks, voices and appearance that suits the times of the book setting but in the 1998 film some of the actors are better in the acting point of view.

The Setting

When the 1967 video was made, they had a huge advantage over the video makers, making the 1998 video. This is because Dorset was rustic, very beautiful and unspoilt, which adds to the many comments that I have about the 1967 video. Don’t get me wrong, the 1998 video has lovely backgrounds and scenery. It just did not seem rural enough. The farm and Boldwood’s house looks more traditional in the 1967 film to the setting of the book. Also, the equipment and props in the 1967 film is more classical. In the 1967 film, even though technology wasn’t great, there were some exceptionally good panoramic views with the cameras.

The scene at Bathsheba’s house with the food feast is once again, more traditional in the 1967 film with food, cutlery and dress sense, more authentic to the 1800’s. One other scene I want to pick up on in the 1967 film is the circus scene. It’s much more realistic and rural to those times than the 1998 film.

Music

There is not much difference between the music, so before I talk about the differences I want to pick up the similarities. For example, for the scene at the church with Fanny’s grave, I think that the music is very dramatic and symbolic towards the loss of Troy’s loves one. The rain symbolises his feelings along with the music. Overall I feel that in the 1967 video the music and sound effects fit better and the instruments that were used are more authentic and are probably the same instruments used in the 1800’s.

The Book & Video

There is one main thing I want to pick up on for this title. That is the picture in my mind. When I started reading the book I got a picture in my mind of the setting, characters and scenery. This image in my head completely changed when I watched the video because some bits were the similar to my image and some weren’t. I also feel that it is good to compare your own imagery to that of the two films to see the differences and similarities.