Monday, August 15, 2005

Books into movies

I read Patrick McGrath's novel Asylum several years ago, and now the movie is coming out. It was very creepy. The movie cast is promising--Natasha Richardson and Ian McKellan. The wife of an asylum administrator falls in love with an inmate--a sculptor who brutally murdered his wife.

Also, the Gulf War memoir (Gulf War I, if you're counting) from Anthony Swofford, Jarhead, is also being released as a feature with Jake Gyllenhaal playing the lead. There is a trailer, and it's apparently due in November, directed by Sam Mendes (American Beauty). Chris Cooper, Jaime Foxx, and Peter Sarsgaard are also in it. Again, it looks like a promising treatment. I thought Swofford's memoir was really well done. After getting out of the Corps, he studied in the Iowa Creative Writing Program, one of the best. He was there with Chris Offutt. I think he's working on a novel, last I heard. Every now and then, I see short pieces or editorials that he has written about the present conflict.

I expect Jarhead will be the season's counterweight to the The Great Raid--a feel-good, morale-boosting film, set safely in the less morally murky WWII era. Hey, if Benjamin Bratt's in it, it has to be good.

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