Movie Monday #4 | Anne with an ‘E’

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Hello, and welcome back to another Movie Monday – a [intended to be] semi-monthly feature on my blog where I compare and discuss books and their movie or television adaptations!

Today I’m discussing the new (it was released in May 2017) Netflix show, Anne with an ‘E’ (or just Anne, as it’s known in Canada), based off of, you guessed it, Anne of Green Gables by LM Montgomery.

As many of you probably know, especially if you follow me on Instagram, I love Anne of Green Gables.  It is one of my absolute favorite books!  So, as you can imagine, I was pretty excited when I found out about this new series.  Although, I admit when I first started hearing actual details about the show, and how it veered from the book, I was concerned.

I want start by saying yes, Anne is not the most faithful of adaptations.  Many things have been added, including characters, scenes have been changed around, and things have been omitted.  Honestly though, I loved it!  Unfaithful adaptations usually annoy me to no end, this time around, I actually didn’t mind?!

At first, I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this show.  The first two episodes especially, veered far from the original story.  The only thing that kept me watching was the scenery and the actors.  The setting so perfectly captures Avonlea, and the actors were phenomenal.  The girl who plays Anne gives a perfect portrayal.  While I love the 1980’s Anne movies, and I think Megan Follows was perfect for the role, I think the girl who plays Anne in this series, while she captures Anne differently, is so good!  The actors for Diana, Matthew, Marilla, and Rachel Lynde are all perfect for their roles as well.  Really though, everyone plays their roles well.  I will say it took me a moment to get used to Gilbert, but I really grew to love the actor for Gil too!

Anne with an ‘E’ is a much heavier adaptation than previous ones.  This series delves into her past before Green Gables, and it is not a pretty one. It goes into much more detail and abuse than the book, Anne now has PTSD, and honestly, it was hard to watch at times.  It felt so raw and real though, and I appreciated that.

Anne Shirley has always been someone who is not afraid to stand up for herself, and someone to prove she can do anything.  This adaptation is no different!  It is filled with so many feminist themes – you’ll definitely be feeling the girl power – and touches on rights and privileges.  It also doesn’t shy away from more taboo topics.  There’s even an episode where Anne gets her period, and in my opinion, it was so well done in such a realistic way (honestly, I don’t know why, probably because our culture makes periods so taboo, but I thought it was going to be so cringe-y, but now it is actually one of my favorite episodes so far).

Like I said earlier, a lot of the actual plot is changed around, and many things are added in, but all the best parts are there.  Plus, the new and the old is so intricately woven together, that much of the new content feels like it has always been there.

All in all, Anne with an ‘E’ is not a faithful adaptation, but it is a good series.  I cannot wait for season 2!  You definitely have to accept the fact that it’s not like the books.  Once you have though, it’s so delightful!  Just remember, just because this TV show changed some things, that doesn’t change the books or the story that LM Montgomery wrote.  It doesn’t change Anne Shirley, Gilbert Blythe, or anyone else.  If you can appreciate Anne for what it is, I think you’ll really enjoy it!

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