Jarama Valley featured in Hemingway and Gellhorn

July 5, 2012

HBO's Hemingway & Gellhorn tracks the relationship between Ernest Hemingway (Clive Owen) and war correspondent Martha Gellhorn (Nicole Kidman) as Gellhorn begins to develop her voice as a war correspondent, beginning with the Spanish Civil War. Photo HBO.

The famous folk songs Red River Valley and Jarama Valley were recently featured in the HBO series Hemingway and Gellhorn, sung by Brooklyn (played by Eric Schneider).

Brooklyn is, in a way, the spirit of Woody Guthrie: hopeful, innocent, idealistic like those young American men who went to Spain to fight fascism (among them my uncle Charley and the grandfather of Eric Schneider, who plays Brooklyn). Later we see he’s inscribed on his guitar the famous Woody Guthrie line: “This guitar fights fascism.”

Discussion of the haunting transformation of the song from an innocent folk song to the melody of a movement and an interview with director David Kaupfman can be found here.