Thursday, April 27, 2006

Girl with a Pearl Earring

I just watched a DVD movie titled "Girl with a Pearl Earring" which was borrowed from my landlord yesterday. It tells a story which happened in Holland in 1665, about the famous Dutch painter Jan Vermeer, his maid Griet who had to work to support her family at 17 years old, and the attraction then platonic love which gradually developed between them.

The cinematography of this movie looks so dreary but is well expressed indeed, particularly the lighting. After watching the film, I tried to google other works of Vermeer and found that the picture style of this film looks exactly like that of Vermeer's paintings in composition, lighting and colouring, and even the scenarios in his paintings! No wonder this is a movie about Jan Vermeer, since you are not only watching his story but also as if enjoying his paintings throughout the movie. ;-)

Jan Vermeer's brief biography and a view of several high-quality images of his artworks are available at, including the most well-known "Girl with a Pearl Earring". Another good site for viewing his paintings is There is also a Windows screen saver downloadable on the net which can demonstrate all the 36 paintings generally attributed to Vermeer.

Moreover, the actress who played Griet in the movie, Scarlett Johansson, also looked like the charming girl in the painting "Girl with a Pearl Earring" particularly her mouth, but you could still see she was a modern girl if you viewed their portraits at the same time. They had quite different expressions in their eyes. To me, it's a little bit curious how the movie's director Peter Webber found her around the world. :-)

By the way, the movie dialogues are mostly in pleasant British English. It is really not bad for me to practice English listening, hehe. :-)

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