Friday, 21 June 2013

LES LIAISONS DANGEREUSES – Pierre Ambroise Choderlos de Laclos, 1782

The 1782 date is a bit misleading as, unless you were a fluent French speaker
with a penchant for banned books, you would not have read this at the time. My version is Richard Aldington’s 1924 translation. It came to life, of course, when John Malkovich literally embraced the role and seduced the audience just as Valmont seduced the women in his circle.
I saw the film first and I was unsure whether the words on the page, especially considering the epistolary nature of the novel, could match up. But, actually, they do. The plot is revealed beautifully and the letters gradually reveal the intrigue and the subtleties of each character.

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