Bright Star

Love, Sweet Love: Bright Star Movie Review

September 14, 2009 at 8:05 pm , by

014_bright_star.0531144  Abbie Cornish as Fanny Brawne and Ben Whishaw as John Keats in 'Bright Star'

What the world needs now is love, sweet love. It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of. Such an amazing song and sentiment—and personally, I think the same can be said about movies. Don’t get me wrong, I love to laugh and I love suspense, but there is nothing like walking out of the theater with a slight love buzz. So, imagine my delight when I saw Bright Star, about the poet, John Keats (Ben Whishaw), and his achingly passionate (albeit chaste) love affair with his neighbor, the precocious, creative clothes designer Fanny Brawne (Abbie Cornish). The story takes place in London in the early 1800s and everything about this movie is beautiful…the clothes, the cinematography, the performances, and most of all, the notion that two people can find such certain, blissful love—even if only for a short time.

The film opens in select cities this Friday and then nationwide at the end of the month. If you’re as intrigued by the story as I was, you’ll enjoy this—it’s the final poem Keats wrote before he died from tuberculosis when he was 25:

010_bright_star.0433544  Abbie Cornish as Fanny Brawne and Ben Whishaw as John Keats in 'Bright Star'To Fanny, by John Keats

I cry your mercy—pity—love!—aye, love!
Merciful love that tantalizes not,
One-thoughted, never-wandering, guileless love,
Unmasked, and being seen—without a blot!
O! let me have thee whole,—all—all—be mine!
That shape, that fairness, that sweet minor zest
Of love, your kiss,—those hands, those eyes divine,
That warm, white, lucent, million-pleasured breast,—
Yourself—your soul—in pity give me all,
Withhold no atom’s atom or I die,
Or living on, perhaps, your wretched thrall,
Forget, in the mist of idle misery,
Life’s purposes,—the palate of my mind
Losing its gust, and my ambition blind!