I can’t tell you exactly how many Emily Dickinson poems I know by heart, but it’s a big number. I’ve read and reread and recited her poetry all my life. Now there’s a film about her life called A Quiet Passion starring Cynthia Nixon as the poet.
Here’s the plot summary for A Quiet Passion, “Cynthia Nixon delivers a triumphant performance as Emily Dickinson as she personifies the wit, intellectual independence and pathos of the poet whose genius only came to be recognized after her death. Acclaimed British director Terence Davies (House of Mirth, The Deep Blue Sea) exquisitely evokes Dickinson’s deep attachment to her close-knit family along with the manners, mores and spiritual convictions of her time that she struggled with and transcended in her poetry.”
Keith Carradine plays Emily’s father. Jennifer Ehle, Jodhi May, Catherine Bailey, Duncan Duff and Emma Bell as the young Emily are also featured.
Emily Dickinson was not publicly recognized during her lifetime. Her first volume of works was published posthumously in 1890 after her family discovered forty hardbound volumes containing nearly 1,800 poems. I don’t think I know all 1800 by heart, but I’m willing to learn more.
I knew I loved her poetry, but until I saw the trailer for this story about her life, I had no idea she was such a rebel. I love her even more now!
I don’t see it in the trailer, but The Movie Waffler review called the film quite funny. That should be a bonus.
A Quiet Passion opens in New York on April 14, and in Los Angeles on April 21. A national release will follow.