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Orlando

Recently, the University of Iowa Department of Theatre Arts put on a production of Orlando, a stage adaptation of Virginia Woolf’s novel. It was incredible. I had never seen time played with in quite that way in theater, with time jumping forward a hundred years at a time, and with whole relationships being described in a matter of minutes. Knowing there was a film adaptation of that same novel left me no choice but to watch it, after which I had to pitch it. Since that offered nothing in the way of summary of the film, or who the hell Orlando is, allow me to clarify. Orlando is a form of love letter from Woolf to her lover, Vita. It’s about Orlando, and his life as a nobleman. PSYCH! That’s only the first half. The second is him becoming a woman, which, I’ll add, springs up out of nowhere! Captivating, funny, and oddly romantic it’s a real treat. This film’s flowing time, curt humor, and a dazzling lead performance from Tilda Swinton make it worth a watch, almost as much as Orlando is worth a read.

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