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Mar 6, 2005 12:48 pm

"Their Eyes Were Watching God" is on Tonight

Halle Berry will appear in a new film version of Zora Neale Hurston's novel,"Their Eyes Were Watching God" tonight at 8:00 p.m. (central time) on ABC. Hurston has been mentioned several times on Liberty and Power. This is the second Berry-related project which is of special interest to our readers. She is also producing a biopic of black conservative, Philippa Schuyler (the daughter of George Schuyler).

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Kenneth R Gregg - 3/8/2005

I enjoyed it. I thought the movie was touching and well-done. The continuity in the movie was good and it brought me into the story. I just can't bring myself to complain because there were issues within the novel that weren't in the movie.

Any movie is a reflection of the director's vision and interpretation, not necessarily that of the novelist.

Just a thought.
Just Ken

Roderick T. Long - 3/7/2005

It's typical Hollywood silliness that we're supposed to believe that Halle Berry's character is getting older and less attractive when she just keeps looking like Halle Berry. What is perhaps more surprising is that issues of race and gender raised in the book are radically toned down in the movie. The whole book is romanticised.

Just one instance: in the book Tea Cake's male friends are envious of the fact that, because Janie is a light-skinned black, when Tea Cake beats Janie the marks show up more clearly on her skin than when they beat their own darker-skinned wives. That's a nasty bit of racial and gender politics that never makes it into the movie, where Tea Cake never beats Janie and nobody seems to be aware that people differ in skin color. The movie ironically makes it a msytery why race and feminist theorists ever put the book into the canon to begin with.

I'm not saying the movie is hopelessly bad; it has a certain haunting air to it, and it captures something of Hurston's passion for freedom and independence. It's certainly worth a watch.

Charles W. Nuckolls - 3/7/2005

Too bad. I recorded it but have not been able to see it yet.

Roderick T. Long - 3/6/2005

Just finished watching the movie. It was enjoyable enough in its way, but man! This is definitely the "Hallmark" version of the story -- everything sugar-coated and whitewashed. Hurston's edgy and uncomfortable novel deserves a better adaptation than this.