Wuthering Heights

An unusual take on Emily Brontë’s classic novel, this new Wuthering Heights is primarily shot with handheld cameras; meanwhile, director Andrea Arnold relies on mostly untested actors. Perhaps the most-interesting development is the casting of Heathcliff, described in the book as a dark-skinned gypsy. Whereas previous performances include Ralph Fiennes, Laurence Olivier, Charlton Heston and Richard Burton, this appears to be the first time “dark-skinned” has warranted an actor of color. Strange, that. Because of the story structure, Heathcliff is shown as a teenager and then a grown man, played by Solomon Glave (younger and not so good) and James Howson (more, please). The cruelties of the novel are ever-present, and Arnold gets a B+ for effort with some of her innovations, but the film doesn’t fully come together as well as it needs to.

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