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Under the Greenwood Tree

Saw a beautiful period drama 'Under the Greenwood Tree' yesterday and as always I couldn't help falling in love with the lead characters, especially Dick Dewy. This is a heart tugging adaptation of Thomas Hardy's novel - Under the Greenwood Tree or the Mellstock Quire: A Rural Painting of the Dutch School. Never read the book before, but I intend to... have to find out more bout Dick Dewy. The movie starts one cold December morning when a school teacher hired by the new vicar, rides into the quaint  little rural village, Mellstock. It's snowing all around and the horse drawn carriage trudges its way through the biting cold carrying Fancy Day, the homely teacher. That one scene was enough to hook me: snow, horse drawn carts, Fancy Day's bonnet and her bulky gown... that's half the magic of any period drama. The rest half is taken up by the flawed, intense and ruggedly good looking men who take your breath away... think Mr. Darcy, Mr. Rochester, Mr. Knightly and now Mr. Dewy. 

So Fancy Day slowly settles into her charming rural life teaching the children of Mellstock, while three suitors vie for her attention and her hand in marriage. And things get complicated when she falls in love with one of them but cannot marry him as she has an obligation to her father. This is pastoral romance at its best, the idyllic country life mostly depicted by the Mellstock church choir who are threatened by the arrival of the new church organ. How Fanny makes up her mind forms the rest of the story, will she abide by her father's wish or will she follow her hearts desire? Fancy portrayed by Keeley Hawes does her part well, but for me it was James Murray as Dick Dewy who really brought life to this classic. He is enchantingly captivating, and he breathes fire into your veins... you'll find yourself still reeling under his effect after you're done watching this movie.

The title of this book is taken from one of Shakespeare's poems:
Under the Greenwood Tree
Who loves to lie with me,
And turn his merry note
Unto the sweet bird's throat,
Come hither, come hither, come hither:
Here shall he see
No enemy
But winter and rough weather.


Wish I could have joined you, sounds like it was a good day out. Have a good weekend Diane
Ganesh Puttu said…
funny..but whenever i think about period dramas..i always associate them with Frankenstein and Dracula..although i must say that the Pride and Prejudice adaptation was one of the best i have seen..because it was faithful to the book and didnt try to ram in cinematic twists....should catch this one soon..
Susan Deborah said…
I go gaga when I see anything like the setting you have described. I go on a wild imagination trip which is so consuming that I cannot hold myself.
Ah, Karen, I know how things would be when we catch up for a conversation ;)

Joy always,
Karen Xavier said…
Diane, someday we shall watch a movie together :)

Ganesh, not sure you'll like it... guys don't tend to like such old movies. But then again, if you liked Pride and Prejudice then maybe this one will grow on you too...

Hahaha Susan... it would definitely be nice to meet up and probably watch something like this sometime, and then discuss it. Maybe in Goa :)

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