The Favourite team of Yorgos Lanthimos and Emma Stone are reuniting for Poor Things, based on the book by Alasdair Gray. The novel is a send-up of Victorian literature and a re-imagining of Frankenstein, in which the monster has been replaced with “Bella Baxter – a beautiful young erotomaniac brought back to life with the brain of an infant.” And you have to admit, that already sounds like a Yorgos Lanthimos movie.
The news of Poor Things comes to us from Production Weekly (by way of The Film Stage) which also features this whopper of a synopsis: “Ostensibly the memoirs of late-19th-century Glasgow physician Archibald McCandless, the narrative follows the bizarre life of oversexed, volatile Bella Baxter, an emancipated woman, and a female Frankenstein. Bella is not her real name; as Victorian Blessington, she drowned herself to escape her abusive husband, but a surgeon removed the brain from the fetus she was carrying and placed it in her skull, resuscitating her. The revived Bella has the mental age of a child. Engaged to marry McCandless, she chloroforms him and runs off with a shady lawyer who takes her on a whirlwind adventure, hopping from Alexandria to Odessa to a Parisian brothel. As her brain matures, Bella develops a social conscience, but her rescheduled nuptials to Archie are cut short when she is recognized as Victoria by her lawful husband, Gen. Sir Aubrey Blessington.”
The film is based on the Alasdair Gray book of the same name, which is described as a “hilarious political allegory and a thought-provoking duel between the desires of men and the independence of women, from one of Scotland’s most accomplished author.” This adaptation is set to be a full-scale Favourite reunion, because not only are Yorgos Lanthimos and Emma Stone involved, but so is Favourite writer Tony McNamara, who is handling the screenplay adaptation here with Lanthimos. The project is set up at Searchlight Pictures, which also distributed The Favourite.
All of this sounds pretty damn great, with this material sounding ripe for Lanthimos’ peculiar brand of humor. I’ll confess that I haven’t enjoyed a lot of Lanthimos’ work – I often find it way too cruel. That said, I thought The Favourite was fantastic, and the best movie he’s made to date. So if Poor Things is similar to that movie, I’m all in.
Production on Poor Things is set to start in the fall of this year, so don’t expect to see it until sometime in 2022.
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/Film – ‘Slash Film: ‘Poor Things’ Will Reunite Yorgos Lanthimos and Emma Stone For a Female Frankenstein Story’
Author: Chris Evangelista
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February 3, 2021