1. Winterbottom’s “Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story” does more than capture humorous digressions like in Sterne’s story. The movie satirizes everything about the filming industry where Sterne’s novel satirizes literary works. The actors’ focus on the battle and love scene mimics how Hollywood treat films today. Many literary adaption films are ruined because they extend or glorify an unimportant scene.
2. In Sterne’s story, ‘hobby-horses’ is a word that describes a hobby that usually point to an unhealthy obsession. This word is associated with Yorick who satires a very well known literary character, Don Quixote. Quixote is also known for his obsession with chivalry and horses. Obsession is one of the major themes in this story because Tristram obsessively digresses and obsesses with his own opinions.
3. A) http://www.online-literature.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1015129
Description: A forum with literature enthusiasts who discuss and recall other literature while they review, “The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy”
Description: A post explaining Locke’s direct influence in “Tristram Shandy” and Locke’s ideas throughout the book.
Description: A collection of literary paradoxes and encourages the reader to critically think about it.
Paradox: How can it be that Shandy ever falls further behind, and yet that given an eternity he will complete his work?
Tristram will always obsess about his digressions and write about something else, rather than write his own autobiography. The film and book both have a sense of incompleteness, but it is the entire joke. The book and film both have an ending, but the joke is that it will never be completely finished. Why would the film credits open a whole new joke of who sounds like Al Pacino when the movie is finished? There’s still a sense of incompleteness.
4. After seeing Michael Winterbottom’s film version, would you agree that Laurence Sterne’s Tristram Shandy is unfilmable? Does Winterbottom’s film capture the essence of the book, or not?
The definition of ‘unfilmable’ depends here. Sterne’s “Tristram Shandy” can never be faithfully filmable, but if it were literally unfilmable, then Winterbottom’s film would not exist. What makes Winterbottom’s film a ‘Tristram Shandy film’ is that it “captures the spirit of Tristram Shandy” (In Praise of Folly). In other words- if the literature satires literature, then a film would satire a film. In the book, there is an instance where Tristram plagiarizes from an author. In the film, actors talk about other movies within a movie.
Winterbottom also captures the themes that are present in the book. Women have a very belittling role in the film and book mediums. They are only seen with children or in a love scene; with exception to Jennie (the film addict), who reinforces the theme of obsession. She reinforces obsession because she was the only character who read the book and knows much about films.