eliminating memories

***Jane Eyre Spoiler Alert*** If you’ve never read the book or seen any of the films, STOP READING MY POST. GO READ JANE EYRE. RIGHT NOW!

I saw Jane Eyre the other day. I have some quibbles. How would I not? I know this book way too well. But really, it was pretty decent. And Judi Dench? Best. Mrs. Fairfax. Ever.

After the film, I was thinking about memory and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. What if we could erase just a few memories? What if we could do that temporarily. I’m not thinking about the big memories, the ones that form the core of Who We Are even when we’d rather not. I mean the little memories. Like the madwoman in the attic or Darth Vader being Luke’s father. What if I could go in to a movie like Jane Eyre and not know what was going to happen? Not know that Rochester is married, that St. John and Jane are cousins, that “Reader, I married him”? What would it be like to see all of that for the first time? (My friend suggested it might have been difficult to follow if one did not already know the story. With a book that dense, the films can seem random in what they include and the leaps they make.) Or, for that matter, to be able to read the book again not knowing those things. I think it would be fun.

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3 Responses to eliminating memories

  1. Terri says:

    Admittedly I have never been able to get through Jane Eyre in book or movie. But I would like too. So perhaps if I know the story and the characters I could manage to make it through….or, not. I never had to read it in school where I would have had a discussion group to keep me going. As a result I feel as if I missing out on a major classic…

  2. Leslie says:

    The first time I read Jane Eyre, when I was maybe 14 or 15, I read it straight through in two days. I was sitting in the living reading while my father watched TV when I got to the part where the reader thinks Rochester is about to tell Jane he’s marrying Blanche. I had to put the book down, go into the bathroom, and sob into a stack of towels for a good ten or fifteen minutes–my dad worried that I was reading too much and choosing books that were too “old” for me and probably would have pulled the plug on my library card if he’d seen my have a complete meltdown over a Victorian novel. But I couldn’t help it; my heart just broke for the poor, plain, unlucky girl because I understood her and her loneliness. Of course, when I pulled myself together and went back to the book, I only had to read about three more lines to learn that he was really in love with Jane. That was one of the most intense reading experiences I’ve ever had. On a side note, I really, really wanted to see this adaptation and went nuts when I saw the trailer but it never came to stupid Lafayette. Lucky you in a big city with a real theater. 🙂

  3. Kristin Berkey-Abbott says:

    I’m late to your wonderful post, which I enjoyed very much. I referenced it in my blog post today: http://kristinberkey-abbott.blogspot.com/2011/05/grace-of-old-friends.html

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