.This month and next Glasgow Film Theatre is showing a series of films examining lesbian relationships. The List spoke to Director/Producer Donna Deitch, whose film Desert Hearts is part of

the series.

about how the film came to be made. ‘I felt as though I wanted to make a film about a relationship between two women. I was at a party when I

In Donna Deitch’s Desert Hearts a mid-thirtyish New York professor of English literature arrives in Reno, Nevade. It is 1959. Her nerves are in

tatters and she retreats to the quiet was talkmg abom th'sfmd someone have“ Ofa dcscrt ranch where she handed me Jane Rule 5 book Desert intends to pass the necessary ofthe Heart. That‘s how it all started requirement of a six weeks residency m 1979' [guess I “'35 essent‘al'y

in order to Obtain a divorce. drawn to the central metaphor ofthe Battered and bruised by the novel; the idea of the risk of break-up of her marriage and the 33mph“ '"herem m [W9 women unfocused feelings of dissatisfaction Commg together 56‘ agamstthe,

that have provoked it She context ofthe risk of gambling in apparently seeks only peace and Reno in the gambling state. I was tranquility to repair the fragments of also draw" to the place {and the "me- a Shattered life. However her I feel there are lots of mirrors sojourn in Reno marks not only the betwecnfhe 50 5 end the 80 5' I thmk passing of one relationship but m Amenca the": '5 a Very

celebrates a rebirth and renewal as she embarks upon an initially tentative but ultimately passionate romance with an attractive younger woman.

When Desert Hearts opened in New York last April its first weekend

‘emotionally explicit’

conservative, reactionary political climate and an administration that recalls the 50’s in many ways. I also think that there is a return towards

. O O . the mentalit of conformit that was always makes in mOthg into a . ' ~ ' - ' ' ' came within tickets of breaking the prevalent ihi’he 5095., y different medium. Some of the ' 213:“;th the Cinema S house record, currently Aside from the identifiable locations are different and in the toga in a Similar wa to a held by Rocky 1!]. After a month on parallels over a three decade gap, novel the professor came from 2 J d , w b {eh hvestors “has? m London n has amassed Detteh was drawn to Desert ofthe Berkeley‘ 1 made her from New mfg: stlilziersZt onyeirlitiulsagnld dollars over “0090.0 at the box Office , Heart because of the rare complexity YOTk originally because I Wanted he! . ' y 5 me were attracted for Although primanly concerned With ofthe relationships between the to be coming to an alien d plelcef. 0 . 1 th the dep'ct'P“ of? 905m“: 165m“ women characters. There is an CDViTODanI, something she’d never cyd 12332:; :rs tetntlenShIP this 15 Clearly nOt 3, film undoubted subtlety of character experienced before Berkeley and positive film};me a relatigonship 0f 11"“th 0‘ narrow appeal; It 5 attitudes that extends even across Nevada are (lune Close and I Wanted between two women’ abOUI,Oovercomlng-the bamers Of the sexes to incorporate the Younger her to be Coming from a "web Two-and-a-halfyears later Deitch l’eP’CSS‘O“ 3"? tak'“g “ban?” 0" woman’s sympathetic brother and different 50” of Place [was also had raised $850 000 and filming meantime! Ssame‘bmswnh herbestffiend’ssurprisinglyequabie workinsforanelemsmoftwo began on locationsin Reno and Which we a“ can Identify . . fiance» and was something that people from q‘me different southern California Budgetary After a beekgtound 1" Pamtmgr Deitch was keen to retain in baekgronnds Coming togetheV ' ' O ' photo m h and documentaries , , , _ restraints and a tight shooting 3 P y . , i translating the novel to the screen. ‘1 AS the mm SPYOdUCer and direetor h du] fth' 1 d3 3 are i Desert Hearts marks an auspicious didn’t have any desire to portray the Deitch enjoyed a position of ec 8- bi 0 “If {time the screen , feature debut for producer-director men in a negative way [didn‘t see a complete control over the finished ‘"‘?""a y re CC C Dori h Id ' i, . . . . . wou v anna Deltch' Adm'mng. to havmg reason to do that,’ she asserts. ‘The work- HoweVeri sueh antonom)’ 3150 hvnh {norfi monety‘ caches used ; a blas towards the Vlsual Side Of is essentially the same Story as entailedlthe trauma of a“ ave, res 0.! cerhaln sce ' film'makmg her mum ‘5 borne out the novel. Natalie Cooper wrote all independent tttmmakets't’atStng a "101$: 33:12: 2:! giggfifghiggi: , bhy the guarded but nonethelfis the dialogue which the book never respectable budget ‘It was hard as g Id h b . t oughttttl answers PTOVIdee tn had, The characters are the same but hell. A nightmare,’ she comments .6“ wou ave cc" certain response to a series ofquestions there are certain changes that one succinctly. Having arrived at 3 things I would have done differently

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