Nabokov’s Cinematic Afterlife

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About the Book

This book offers critical studies of films that adapted works by Vladimir Nabokov. One of the most screened twentieth century authors (with over ten books adapted for cinema), his works are full of quirky and forbidden romance, and his writing is renowned for its cinematic qualities (e.g., frames, stage directions, and descriptions suggesting specific camera positions and movements). Films discussed include Lolita (both Kubrick’s 1962 and Lyne’s 1997 versions), Richardson’s Laughter in the Dark (1969), Skolimowski’s King, Queen, Knave (1972), Fassbinder’s Despair (1978), Foulon’s Mademoiselle O (1994), Kuik’s An Affair of Honor (1999), Gorris’ The Luzhin Defence (2000), and Rohmer’s The Triple Agent (2004). A final chapter discusses similarities between Nabokov and Jean-Luc Godard.

About the Author(s)

Ewa Mazierska is a professor of comtemporary cinema in the School of Journalism, Media and Communication, at the University of Central Lancashire in the UK. She has published numerous articles on various aspects of European cinema.

Bibliographic Details

Ewa Mazierska
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 243
Bibliographic Info: 24 photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2011
pISBN: 978-0-7864-4543-1
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8008-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments v

Abbreviations ix

Introduction: Nabokov’s Afterlife in Cinema 1

1. Humbert Between Dignity and Romanticism: Lolita by Stanley Kubrick (1962) and Adrian Lyne (1997) 13

2. Going Blind in Swinging London: Laughter in the Dark by Tony Richardson (1969) 51

3. Nabokov, or the Logic of Late Capitalism: King, Queen, Knave by Jerzy Skolimowski (1972) 70

4. Escape into a Different Person, Escape into a Different Reality: Despair by Rainer Werner Fassbinder (1978) 87

5. Remembrance of Things Unspoken: Mademoiselle O by Jérôme Foulon (1994) 104

6. Duel in Contemporary Estonia: An Affair of Honor by Valentin Kuik (1999) 125

7. Nabokov as a Gentle Feminist: The Luzhin Defence by Marleen Gorris (2000) 143

8. From B-Movie Script to Greek Tragedy: “The Assistant Producer” by Vladimir Nabokov, and Triple Agent by Eric Rohmer (2004) 163

9. Vladimir Nabokov and Jean-Luc Godard 181

Appendix: Films Discussed in the Book 211

Chapter Notes 215

Works Cited 219

Index 229

Book Reviews & Awards

“recommended”—Choice.