Just a few days ago Netflix blessed us with another Armie Hammer movie and we can’t be more grateful. ‘Rebecca’ was released on Netflix this week starring the ‘Call me by your name’ heart-throb Armie Hammer and none other than Lily James.
The psychological thriller is based on Daphne Du Maurier’s 1938 gothic novel of the same title. The story concerns a young unnamed lady who falls in love with a widower. Once she goes back to his massive estate she is shocked to find that he is not just yet over his wife’s death.
This isn’t the first movie version of ‘Rebecca’ with the first adaptation having been released in 1940 by perhaps the most influential filmmakers ever – Alfred Hitchcock. The film starred Lawrence Olivier and Joan Fontaine. It was a great success and even received 11 academy award nominations of which it won ‘Best Picture’ and ‘Best Cinematography.’
Being deemed as “culturally, historically and aesthetically significant” by the Library of Congress, it was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry in the US just 2 years ago.
And here is where the 2020 version gets a bit dicey, as it seems to be falling under the “curse of the remakes.”
Following Hitchcock’s stupendous success, the 2020 version has since received a plethora of negative reviews. The New York Times described it as a “flimsy cardboard box full of nothing,” also stating: “A Classic Tale but there’s only one Hitch,” which is a brilliant pun! Similarly, the UK Independent described Armie and Lily as being “two planks of wood in this dreary, garish adaptation,” giving it just 2 stars out of 5.
On a positive note, it was praised for its aesthetics, mainly costume designer Julian Day for the beautiful frocks and blouses that Lily James donned throughout the movie and Armie Hammer’s remarkable three-piece suit. Laurie Rose’s cinematography was also considered as one of the positives of the film, which included stunning shots of the couple driving in a convertible and splendid shots of beaches and cliffs.
Rebecca was in fact, filmed in locations across Dorset, Devon, Cornwall and Hertfordshire in the South West of the United Kingdom as well as France
Have you watched Rebecca yet; What did you think about the acting? Do you also prefer Hitchcock’s version?