As you all know, I write historical romance. Although, I've written about the Regency era, I prefer the Victorian era. The fact women became more empowered definitely helped. As you can probably tell, I like change in my novels. Anyways, below I'm listing the movies (or TV-based shows) that I've watched on more than five occasions for use in research. I'm one of those multi-tasking writers, where I have to play a movie or music while putting words to paper. If I don't, let's just say I can't concentrate. It's one of those habits from my school days. I used to lay on my bed listening to CDs while I completed my homework every day. And yes, I did my homework before doing anything else. My dad set very strict rules about school.
Anyways, here is the list:North & South (2004):
In this adaptation from Elizabeth Gaskell's novel set during the Victorian Industrial Revolution, Margaret Hale is forced to move to Milton, which is in the north. She takes offense to the people, and most of the time she does not agree with the handsome textile manager's, Mr. Thornton's, views. Although their difference in beliefs overwhelm them, there is a chemistry that ignites their passion.
In my opinion, this story is timeless. So much happens in the character's minds and through their actions. If they never spoke another word, I'd be unhappy, but I'd know what they were feeling. I love watching this and using it's techniques in my own story. Not only is the setting Victorian (which works for The Earl's Son's time-period), but I could watch this movie over and over again without getting tired of it.
Wuthering Heights (2009):
Given the choice between a life of comfort (with Edgar Linton) and a profound love (with Heathcliff), Cathy's actions have repercussions for multiple generations in this haunting story of turbulent passion and revenge.
In my opinion, ever since I read this book in high school, it's become a wonderful influence. I love Gothic romance. I think writers can learn from writing tragic love affairs. Just look at Shakespeare. We love our readers to feel emotion when they read our books. If they don't have the ultimate experience, then what is the point? Oh, and I bet you didn't know that I'm reputed for my "beautiful landscapes, passionate romance, and regrets of the past".
Jane Eyre (2006):
After taking on a governess position in the home of a mysterious man, the orphan Jane Eyre must learn the truth in order to gain his acceptance. Mr. Rochester does not take wish to tell his secrets, but unlikely events pull them together.
In my opinion, I absolutely loved this book growing up. Not only has the 'mysterious man' approach shown up in my books, but the intrigue is too much to ignore. Jane's life didn't not start out great, nor is she the most beautiful woman around, but until you meet someone like Mr. Rochester and have a love so great no one can come in between, you realize nothing else matters but love. Love inspires me greatly.
In the 1840s, Cranford is ruled by the ladies. They adore good gossip; and romance and change is in the air, as the unwelcome grasp of the Industrial Revolution rapidly approaches their beloved rural market-town.
In my opinion, this movie is full of witty dialogue, and shows the social life women led in the time before the Industrial Revolution. The acting is superb. I absolutely love the inclusion of piano playing and singing. Not to mention, they perform great songs.
Royal Navy captain Wentworth was haughtily turned down eight years ago as suitor of pompous baronet Sir Walter Elliot's daughter Anne, despite true love. Now he visits their former seaside country estate, rented by his brother-in-law, admiral Croft, so the financially stressed baronet can afford a fashionable, cheaper residence in trendy Bath. First the former lovers meet again on the estate, where they feel vibes again, but neither dares admit them until it seems too late.
In my opinion, this is my favorite Jane Austen movie adaptation. I loved Pride & Prejudice, but in no ways are the character's emotions unspoken. I think Anne is a sweet lady, caught up in circumstance, and Wentworth is not only handsome, but worth the wait. For anyone who ever had to love someone from afar (ME!!!), then this is the movie for you.
Yes, all these movies involve romance, intrigue, mystery, passion, music, great dialogue, and unspoken desire. I will probably end up watching them more times than I can count. Oh, and did I fail to mention my obsession with Celtic Thunder? :)
Thank you so much for reading. Please feel free to share your favorite movies and music in a comment below. I'll look forward to reading them.