[Movie] The Dead (1987)

  • Directed by: John Huston
  • Cast: Anjelica Huston, Donal McCann, Cathleen Delany, Helena Carroll 
  • Based on: The Dead (Dubliners)by James Joyce

“The Dead” is John Huston’s last movie as a director. The movie is a faithful adaptation of James Joyce’s short story.

The overall tone of the movie seems monotonous; the description of the dinner party of an Irish middle class. But I was absorbed into the film with its subtle description of sensitive issues. You are challenged to think over the family relations, class differences, nationality and patriotism – Irish independence -, racism, genders, generation gaps – nostalgia of old generations -, life and death, and love. There is no direct message to the audience, and serious dialogues are interrupted by etiquette or courtesy. The tensions among the characters are apparent but only expressed in a controlled manner and covered/revealed by music and dance.

Even though the film was made in the 1980s, which was the spark moment of Postmodernism, you can see how the world is viewed from a modernistic point of view. – Yes, the book is written in the era of modernism. – Somehow, people act and think the same through ages, but it is very interesting to see how we reflect our lives.

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