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A celebrated and feared English ghost is outraged when the new American owners of his haunting place refuse to take him seriously and actually fight back against him.
Posted September 11, 2013
Thanks to social media, I was recently reminded of one of my favorite movies as a kid, The Canterville Ghost. I read the book when I was younger but really couldn’t remember much about it so I decided to curl up with it one afternoon and reread it. At 126 pages, it took me no time at all and I forgot how much I enjoyed the story. Geared toward a younger audience, the story is about a crotchety old ghost who takes great pleasure in scaring the tenants, maids, and visitors. He’d been quite successful for the 300 years he ambled the halls until an American family moved into the British manor and gave him a run for his money, and ultimately helping him find peace.
¿When I was a kid I remember thinking how funny it was that the children in the family were playing tricks on the ghost and how miserable he was. It never occurred to me that the book was actually a social satire that mocked Americans for their brash and rude behavior. For 300 years, Sir Simon de Canterville had been horrifying the good and proper Englishmen who resided in his home. Then the Americans show up and turn the tables on their resident ghost. The younger twins throw pillows at him while the adults treat him with indifference, all of which are infuriating to the ghost. The only beacon of light in the family is the elder daughter, Virginia, who takes pity on the chained ghost and ultimately helps him.
Naturally, I immediately went to find the movie that I so loved as a kid when I finished the book. I had no idea that there were so many different versions. My favorite version is the 1985 TV movie with Richard Kiley, Brian Austin Green, and Kellie Martin…. but apparently it was trumped in YouTube popularity by the 1986 version with Alyssa Milano. So while I can’t find any clips of the one I so dearly loved, I did find this cheesy gem of a video of Alyssa Milano as the adorable Jennifer (who is actually Virginia, but we know which name was more popular in 1986). And is it just me, or does she remind you of Emma Watson?
Posted January 9, 2009
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I really enjoyed all the short stories in this book. Wilde has such a great writing style. Just enough suspense and development to keep a reader truly interested in the tale. The stories will make you laugh out loud, look over your shoulder and wonder why no one seems to write like this anymore. A must read!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 7, 2010
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