Monday, November 13, 2006
..it is the cause...
As I've been sewing the aqua/chocolate quilt this weekend, I've been listening to DVDs (well, I can't watch or I'd sew over my finger or something icky like that! - and besides, they're usually films I've seen before, so I can replay them on my mind's widescreen). I revisited Stage Beauty, Richard Eyre's film about Restoration theatre, with Billy Crudup and Claire Danes. Excellent film: Billy plays Ned Kynaston, one of the last of the men licensed to play women on stage, before Charles II decreed that women could play women. It oscillates around Othello, particularly Desdemona's death scene.
The "it is the cause" line does get an airing - I remember it from studying Othello, at school. So the weekend's photo of 'cause' badges from the festival co-ordinated with the film. Well, that's my version of events (it's my blog and I'll draw a long bow if I want to, or something like that!).
I studied Othello, as my final year Shakespeare (the syllabus rotated through the tragedies, I still wish I'd landed on a Hamlet year - but then I did get to also do Romeo and Juliet in the advanced class, and that was great fun).
We were shown some films to enhance our understanding of the play, but the one that has stuck in my mind starred Sergei Bondarchuk in somewhat erratic blackface. The scene that made the greatest impact happened to be Desdemona's death - mostly because he had dark hair when he tottered behind the filmy draperies to smother her, and it had gone completely white by the time he emerged. I also remember a lot of highly coloured chocolate-box sunset scenes, although I'm fuzzy on what they had to do with Shakespeare's play. Ain't the internet wonderful? It's listed on imdb, including a review by someone who probably isn't a high school brat, and therefore may have more appreciation of Art circa 1955.