Analyse of Sylvia

Essay by ferreolUniversity, Bachelor'sB, May 2004

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The life of poet and novelist Sylvia Plath -- one of the most celebrated literary figures of her generation -- is brought to the screen in this controversial screen adaptation. Born in Boston in 1932, Sylvia Plath (played by Gwyneth Paltrow) developed a precocious talent as a writer and published her first poem when she was only eight years old. That same year, tragedy introduced itself into her life as Sylvia Plath was forced to confront the unexpected death of her father. In 1950, she began studying at Smith College on a literary scholarship, and while she was an outstanding student, she also began suffering from bouts of extreme depression; following her junior year, she attempted suicide for the first time. Sylvia Plath survived, and, in 1955, she was granted a Fulbright Scholarship to study in England at Cambridge. While in Great Britain, Sylvia Plath met Ted Hughes (played by Daniel Craig), a respected author who would later become the British Poet Laureate; they both fell in love, and married in 1958.

However, marriage, family, and a growing reputation as an important poet failed to bring Sylvia Plath happiness, and as she became increasingly fascinated with death in her later poetry and her sole novel, The Bell Jar, and after Hughes left her for another woman, her depression went into a tailspin from which she would never fully recover. Sylvia was adapted in part from Birthday Letters, a collection of poems Ted Hughes published in 1998, in which he dealt with his marriage to Plath in print for the first time.

Rarely does a film touch you from the beginnning and keep you enthralled until the very end. Sylvia is the one film that does just that! Gwyneth Paltrow is perfect as doomed poet Sylvia Plath. She plays...