Northanger Abbey? Gothic?

Northanger Abbey_1I was quite surprised to see an image of this wonderful Jane Austen story on Pale Writer‘s Blogathon announcement. So I learn something everyday…and actually, it is right there, so obvious. Because Catherine Morland, Northanger Abbey’s main character is engrossed by Gothic stories, particularly Anne Radcliffe’s Mysteries of Udolpho. Ms Radcliffe was, in fact, one of the first writers of Gothic fiction. Or, at least someone key in making it a “genre” if you like. Something else I’ve learnt.

Any excuse to watch the 2007 rendition of Northanger Abbey again…this time for the Gothic influence. It is absolutely wonderful watching Catherine, played perfectly by Felicity Jones, daydream (and dream) of all things “horrid” and terribly suspenseful, all influenced by those novels she loves to engross herself in. I absolutely love how this movie integrates the characters into her various fantasies all dark and moody (I’m not sure how they are portrayed in the book…will find out soon though as I have it waiting patiently on my bedside table to be read) from her daily encounters…including Henry Tilney and his brother. Ultimately, our dreams and daydreams involve people we know, I guess. And don’t we all build up our own expectations of the unknown…like Catherine expects a haunted mansion with ghouls and ghosts. And Henry just loves to tease her about it.


Felicity Jones is perfect as Catherine who gives us that wonderful contrast between innocence and her “wild” haunting romantic dreams. I’m enjoying J.J. Field (Henry) more and more…

Her staying over at the Tilneys’ place is a delight. I thoroughly enjoy watching her build up her own mysterious world based on her readings and what she’s heard. The lightning storm adds the perfect atmosphere.


All-in-all, a wonderful movie, well worth the watch.

For other entries of the Dark and Deep: The Gothic Horror Blogathon give Pale Writer a visit (here). And be sure to check out my Sleepy Hollow post for the same Blogathon (here). And while not part of this Blogathon, also thematically fitting is a previous post of mine on The Crow both comic and movie over here (here).




  1. I watched this adaptation absolute eons ago, but I remember really enjoying it, and now you’ve made me want to seek it out again! I so love the idea of gothic being considered so shocking and it also amuses me that it was thought to be “unhealthy” for a woman’s mind, never mind that men believed women’s brains would overheat from too much mental activity. I’ve always loved how Austen managed to poke fun at the social strictures of her time, and she does it so well in this story, I also love how it’s clear that Austen loved gothic literature, too. Thanks so much for contributing such a lovely article to my Blogathon!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, thanks sooooo much for your wonderful comment. Really appreciated. And, I’m glad I looked at this movie from a “gothic” angle this time round. Actually, I’m glad I watched it again fairly soon after my first watching because I now knew the story and could focus on the other aspects a bit more. Can’t wait to get stuck into the book.
      Enjoy it (again) when you watch it…
      Have an awesome week ahead


  2. I love this film (and book) and how Austen pokes fun at the gothic novel craze. As much as I would love to think of myself as a Lizzie Bennett, I always knew I was probably more of a Catherine Morland so I’ve always gravitated towards this story (I also find the Mysteries of Udolpho great fun). Thanks for highlighting this wonderful film! Great post!


    1. Ah, thanks so much for your wonderful comment.
      I can’t wait to read Northanger Abbey – wondering how different it will be from the movie. And one day I’ll need to tackle The Mysteries of Udolpho – should be interesting.
      Have a wonderful week ahead!

      Liked by 1 person

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