Every so often, I'll be flipping through the channels and find myself caught up in something on Turner Classic Movies. Aside from showing some very interesting things, they don't have commercials, so there's no 'easy out' to snap me out of the story and move me along to a rerun of 'Castle' or another fascinating real estate adventure with 'House Hunters'.
Speaking of 'House Hunters', the movie I randomly found myself watching last week was sort of related.
'A Place of One's Own' was a 1945 film produced by Gainsborough Pictures, a studio that released a series of melodramatic films that were unrelated, but had the same general tone and employed a recurring cast of actors. From what I can gather, I would say that they were the cinematic equivalent of a beach read: popular escapist fare. Except that instead of being paired with sun and sand, these were vaguely moody distractions from World War Two.
This one is a ghost story, where the haunting is represented entirely by the eerie playing of a piano and the actress' portrayal of possession. It all starts when an older couple buys a house, fulfilling their lifelong dream. There are rumors about the house being haunted, but of course they don't indulge in such silly fancies. Along with them are some servants and a young woman, Annette, who is a companion to the wife. Where has that career path disappeared to? Companion. Only Time Lords seem to get to have one anymore.
Moving swiftly on, Annette proceeds to engage in classic young heroine activities, such as getting engaged to a local doctor. And, of course, just when things appear to be ending happily ever after...cue the eerie piano playing. Annette become possessed by the ghost of a young woman who died under mysterious circumstances and has some unfinished business with a handsome young doctor of her own.
I won't say this was a fascinating film, but it was intriguing. It's always interesting to see pieces of pop culture that aren't the one or two masterpieces. It gives you a different perspective on the people making and taking the culture. Maybe it was because I was about to go to an alumni event for Sarah Lawrence, but I couldn't help but think that these films would be rife with conference paper topics. There's so much going on here having to do with home ownership, which kept me from changing the channel more than wondering what would happen to poor little Annette.
For more madness, go to Amaryllis Musings.