Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Indignation by the book: Meet Sarah Gadon as Olivia Hutton

“There was a girl, if not yet in the picture, one that I had my eye on. She was a sophomore transfer student like me, pale and slender, with dark auburn hair and with what seemed to me an aloofly intimidating, self-confident manner. She was enrolled in my American history class and sometimes sat right next to me, but because I didn't want to run the risk of her telling me to leave her alone, I hadn't worked up the courage to nod hello, let alone speak to her. One night I saw her at the library. I was sitting at a desk up in the the stacks that overlooked the main reading room; she was at one of the long tables on the reading room floor, diligently taking notes out of a reference book. Two things captivated me. One was the part in her exquisite hair. Never before had I been so vulnerable to the part in someone's hair. The other was her left leg, which crossed over her right leg and rhythmically swaying up and down. her skirt fell midway down her calf, as was the style, but still, from where I was seated I could see beneath the table the unceasing movement of that leg. She must have remained there like that for two hours, steadily taking notes without a break, and all I did during that time was to look at the way that hair was parted in an even line and the way she never stopped moving her leg up and down. Not for the first time, I wondered what moving a leg like that felt like for a girl. She was absorbed in her homework, and I, with the mind of an eighteen-year-old boy, was absorbed in wanting to put my hand up her skirt. The strong desire to rush off to the bathroom was quelled by my fear that if I did so, I might get caught by a librarian or a teacher or even by an honorable student, be expelled from school, and wind up a rifleman in Korea.’’
p. 29, Indignation



While Sarah Gadon has blond, not dark auburn hair, and in this shot, her leg is thrown over the arm of the chair, not her own leg, to my mind, she embodies the most important quality I've seen in Olivia's character which is her apparent lack of sexual inhibition. The film is set in a very different time, one in which young women weren't as free sexually as they are in 2016. Olivia Hutton's sexuality is used by Roth as one indicator of her mental instability. I'm fascinated to see where Roth takes it in the novel which he wrote in 2008.
Equally fascinated to see where director takes it in the film!

Meet Logan Lerman as Marcus Messner and watch the Indignation trailer.

Indignation opens July 29th. I'm at page 56 of 120 pages. How about you?  

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