Anne of Green Gables

'What's your name?'

The child hesitated for a moment.

'Will you please call me Cordelia?' she said eagerly.

'Call you Cordelia? Is that your name?'

'No-o-o, it's not exactly my name, but I would love to be called Cordelia. It's such a perfectly elegant name.'

'I don't know what on earth you mean. If Cordelia isn't your name, what is?'

'Anne Shirley,' reluctantly faltered forth the owner of that name, 'but, oh, please do call me Cordelia. It can't matter much to you what you call me if I'm only going to be here a little while, can it? And Anne is such an unromantic name.'

'Unromantic fiddlesticks!' said the unsympathetic Marilla. 'Anne is a real good plain sensible name. You've no need to be ashamed of it.'

'Oh, I'm not ashamed of it,' explained Anne, 'only I like Cordelia better. I've always imagined that my name was Cordelia - at least, I always have of late years. When I was young I used to imagine it was Geraldine, but I like Cordelia better now. But if you call me Anne please call me Anne spelled with an E.'

'What difference does it make how it's spelled?' asked Marilla with another rusty smile as she picked up the teapot.

'Oh, it makes such a difference. It looks so much nicer. When you hear a name pronounced can't you always see it in your mind, just as if it was printed out? I can; and A-n-n looks dreadful, but A-n-n-e looks so much more distinguished. If you'll only call me Anne spelled with an E I shall try to reconcile myself to not being called Cordelia.'
In our house, we have been watching the Anne of Green Gables trilogy over the past couple of days. We hope to watch the third instalment tomorrow. I am a little reluctant about tomorrow's film. I grew up with the first two and have thoroughly enjoyed the wonderful romantic humour of them, not to mention the memories that they have brought back to me. I remember falling in love with Anne's character as a child and really enjoying The Road to Avonlea. However, I have never seen the third film and understand that it deviates considerably from Lucy Maud Montgomery's original series of books.

Has anybody any thoughts about it?

In searching for a photograph for this post, I encountered this. As an Anne lover, I am skeptical of this. I would love to see it and enjoy it but I'm also worried that this sort of meddling may spoil the story for me. Is anybody who has seen it able to offer any insights? I would be very grateful.

Thank you so much.

6 responses:

margaret said...

Oh dear. I wish people wouldn't rewrite things. I read the beginning of the 'spoiler' on the page they linked to - it's awful. They've got rid of half of Anne's children AND Davy and Dora. Ironically, re Gilbert's death, there's a scene in 'Rilla', I think, where a window frame reflecting a cross above her son's bed heralds another cross in faraway France so we know that Walter dies in the War.

I think if you're going to watch this you'd best pretend it's another story altogether about another Anne. Perhaps it's in the spirit of Anne as she was always imagining alternatives but I don't think she would have imagined Glen St Mary away for anything.

I can't say I ever liked the Megan Fellows version(the BBC did one when I was young, back in the Ark, with an actress called Kim Brady and it was much more faithful to the books). Personally I'd recommend the books, all of the first six, if you haven't read them already, they're so much more vivid.

margaret said...

As for the third part of the trilogy - well, it's got more in common with the one above than anything LMM wrote. Her stories were so wonderful, a look into a life so long gone, that they shouldn't be tampered with. Half the world has written romantic stories about WWI but only one person wrote about life in small island towns in the 1800s.

My hobby horse and I will leave your blog now.

Michael said...

No, no! Don't leave. I'm very grateful for your contributions and insights. I haven't read the books but have been persuaded to do so by your comment above.

I love the Megan Follows version because it was a special part of my childhood and I know no other. I shall read the books but I don't think I can watch any other dramatisation of them.

I generally don't much care for war films, whether of the action or soppy variety, so that may spoil tomorrow's viewing for me, especially as it is so far removed from Prince Edward Island and Avonlea. We'll see how ti works out.

I think I shall ad the books to my list of wants, alongside the Blackwell Dictionary of Eastern Christianity. There's a combination. :-)

Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Margaret.

margaret said...

Definitely read the books!

I don't think I would watch the old BBC version now either - it was great in its day but in the 70s and 80s everything was done on set and recorded on videotape so compared to modern productions they're very cardboard (and the BBC's costume department had more polyester than Liverpool cathedral)and dull even though in terms of screenwriting, etc, they are often more faithful to the original.

Ian Climacus said...

Oh, I recall with fondness the Megan Follows version too...happy days.

Michael said...

Well, what a disappointment that was! It had some good moments but for the most part the characters were not the same other than their names. I also got the impression that they had padded out the rather dreary storyline for as long as possible and then, realising that they had to tie up the loose ends, crammed it all into the last five minutes. Anne meeting young Dominic at the station was a nice touch but that was about it.

I think I shall content myself with the first two in future, and yes, I shall be investing in the books.

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