Saturday, 6 October 2012

Week 41: South Carolina

"Just a little bit south of North Carolina
 That's where I long to be;
 In a little brown shack in South Carolina
 Someone waits for me..."
 - 'A Little Bit South of North Carolina',
 Dean Martin

From the grand pleasure estates of Rhode Island we are cruising down the Atlantic Highway to the grand plantation estates of South Carolina. It really doesn't seem all that long since we were in North Carolina, but in its southern city the tobacco plantations were replaced with those growing rice and indigo. They were still dependent on slave labour however.
This maybe explains South Carolina's famous orneriness. The state was the first to declare independence from Britain in 1776 and the first to declare independence from the Union in 1861. When Confederate troops started shelling Fort Sumter in Charleston harbour it was the spark that started off the Civil War. Even after reconstruction it was one of the leading states to follow segregation. It was only in 2000 that South Carolina became the last state to stop flying the Confederate flag over the state house.

Despite this South Carolina is famous for its southern hospitality. Added to a muggy climate and swampy terrain this seems to make it more like its southern neighbour Georgia than its northern counterpart. I know that Charleston is a historic port town and it has been on my list of places in America to see. The Savannah shown during Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil is what I expected Charleston to be.
I've had a bit of a mishap whilst searching out South Carolina movies. The one I thought was absolutely nailed on was weepy chick-flick The Notebook. The original novel by Nicholas Sparks was set, as is most of his work, in North Carolina (as in Nights in Rhodanthe). The film version relocated the action to South Carolina. However, I have been unable to get hold of a copy: neither Lovefilm nor Blackbuster seem to have it. My back up is likewise out of stock on Lovefilm - though to be honest it was more the name than the storyline that attracted me to Shag. So my three South Carolina movies are, in fact:
  • The Big Chill (1983)
  • Doc Hollywood (1991)
  • Slither (2006)

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