Different, Yet the Same

        Some of the best stories begin as books, and are later made into movies. This is true for Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights This book has been read all over the world because of its wonderfully developed characters and elaborate story line. In 1939, William Wyler directed Wuthering Heights, and fifteen years later Luis Buñuel directed Los Abismos de Pasion. Both of these movies, are based on the plot and theme of Brontë's story, but they are depicted in completely different ways.

        William Wyler gave his film a very sophisticate style by making everything look beautiful, from the costumes to the scenery. Shooting this film in the hills of California gave the background a complexion view that grabs one's eyes. Luis Buñuel shot his motion picture in Mexico. This Spanish movie had a very unique look. The book and Wyler's movie had similar physical features. But the desert of Mexico is original and gave the movie a more rugged feel. The costumes can be compared in a similar way. While the costumes of Wyler's film were elaborate delicate dresses, Buñuel's costumes represented the fashion of upper-class Mexico with less decorated but formal clothes.

        But the physical features are not all that differed from these two films. Though they are based on the same book, neither of them captured the entire novel. Only parts of the story could be made on film. Wyler's version began similar to the novel itself, and had the story told by Ellen. But Buñuel showed his story as if it was happening right now. One misses everything about the childhood experiences this way. This is not the only story differences. They end in two completely different ways; that is also different from Brontë's version. Wyler depicted Catherine dying in Heathcliff's arms in her bedroom. Later Heathcliff chases after Catherine's ghost, and freezes to death. Then the two walk off into the night mist together, showing that they are finally reunited and can be in love forever. On the other hand Buñuel aroused a different emotion with his unique ending. He made it when Catalina (Catherine) died giving birth to her son. Afterwards, Alejandro (Heathcliff) goes to her grave and is shot by her brother, Ricardo (Hindley), and killed. Both have powerful endings, appealing to different emotions.

        These films have many different characteristics that give each movie and individual distinctive style that make each movie captivating. But there is one major concept that is shown in both interpretations, and that is the characters have a need for each other whether it be a good or bad desire. Heathcliff and Catherine truly love each other but have many obstacles in their path. This is shown from all perceptions. So they are different, yet the same.

Lindsey Bennett

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