31 Frightful Films – #21 The Yellow Wallpaper

Our intentions were good. We rented and downloaded enough scary movies to watch on our cruise (and on the plane rides to and from Florida) but…we didn’t watch them. Feeling guilty, we watched one of them at the airport yesterday. The shortest film we’d brought with us: The Yellow Wallpaper. Just now, searching for the correct IMDB entry I discovered that MANY films have been made from the short story by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. This one is a short from 2011 set in modern times and starring Alex Childs as the wife and Richard Brimblecomb (really, that’s almost as good as Cumberbatch) as the husband. The premise: a wife has suffered some sort of mental breakdown. Her husband brings her to a house to convalesce in a room with peculiar yellow wallpaper.

The Yellow Wallpaper poster

Christa’s review

I confess I read this story in two or three college literature courses. It’s de rigueur for women’s lit and/or women’s studies. Thanks to the Gutenberg project you can read the story here for free! It’s about the repression of women and is seen as an early feminist work. None of that comes through in this interpretation. Set in modern times–and ergo without the complete submission of a 19th century woman to her husband–the wife’s confinement doesn’t make sense. They stay in a lovely house, but she sleeps in a terrible, sparsely furnished attic room with ripped and dirty wallpaper. Her husband (some sort of doctor) insists she sleep there and that it will be good for her. He discourages her from writing in her journal but it’s a good thing she defies him; otherwise we’d have no freakin’ idea what the hell was going on in that room. Gunny and I did jump once (particularly embarrassing at Gate 40), and there were creepy moments, but I can’t recommend this as either a scary movie or a good film. Read the story or watch a different version.

Dana’s review

It was….different? Not really my cup of tea. Just one moment when I jumped, but it just wasn’t that interesting. If it was a full length film, I would have given up all together, but the fact that it is only 30 minutes kept me in it. If you have 30 minutes to kill and want to watch something a little different that you are used to, then give it a try. Otherwise, don’t make this a must see for you.

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About trixie360

The not-so secret identity of author Christa Charter.

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