Peter Jackson's "Heavenly Creatures" Compared To A Tipical Outlaw Couple In Particular, Malick's "Badlands"

3953 words - 16 pages

IntroductionWhen reading about Peter Jackson's Heavenly Creatures I could not help but begin comparing the film's two main characters to the typical outlaw couple, in particular, the couple we see in Terence Malick's Badlands. The more I thought about it, the more I began to realize that the two films can be equated to each other in many respects. At the very least, they both ultimately belong to crime film genre. Both films are also adaptations of real events, though both have been subjected to the director's artistic license, Malick's Badlands in particular as he goes as far to change some facts, including the fate of the movie's protagonists [in real life, Holly was not put on probation but sentenced to jail, also, her name was not Holly].I see Pauline and Juliet in Heavenly Creatures as much an outlaw couple as Badland's Holly and Kit. Therefore, what I shall be trying to prove in this essay is how alike to two couples are.First and foremost, however, I feel it is important to give a short overview of what each film is about.Heavenly CreaturesHeavenly Creatures is a story of the friendship between two teenage girls: Pauline Parker, an outcast at her all-girls school in Christchurch, New Zealand, and Juliet Hulme, a new student at the school. The girls are brought together by their mutual inability to join in Physical Education classes due to illness and their love for Mario Lanza. Their friendship has remarkable intensity, intoxicating the girls, who rush everywhere with squeals and giggles; giddy with delight at the private world they have created together in their imaginations.The friendship takes a knock when Juliet contracts tuberculosis and in quarantined, thus separated from Pauline. The friends begin to write each other long, detailed letters in the personas of two of the characters of their imaginary world, Borovnia. Though Juliet is released from the hospital, her parents plan to send her to South Africa "for the good of her health", an excuse they have used before and which fills Juliet with dread. The girls are heartbroken by the prospect of being permanently separated like this. Hoping that they can remedy the situation, Pauline asks her mother to be allowed to go with Juliet. Mrs. Parker refuses for obvious reason, and additionally because both of the girls' parents at this point are disturbed by their friendship, worried about their "unwholesome" behaviour. The notion that the girls may even be homosexual, a horrible disease for the 1950s, is also mentioned [I will talk about this aspect later on].At her mother's refusal, Pauline's dislike for her mother turns into loathing. Juliet and Pauline formulate a plan to escape to Hollywood together. They manage to get the money for the trip, yet only one obstacle seems to be standing in their way, Pauline's mother. It seems logical to the girls that the only way they can carry out their plan is to remove Honora Parker from the equation. They do this by bludgeoning her to death with a...

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