Posts Tagged ‘relationship’

This is the story of famous lovers Abelard and Heloise, and the tragedy of their relationship.  Abelard was an intelligent but provocative philosopher, whose religious views caused contention within the church.  When he falls in love with his student Heloise, the niece of Canon Fulbert, their relationship causes further scandal, and steps are taken not only to keep them apart, but to take revenge on Abelard.

I thought this was a fabulous production, by the English Touring Theatre (and which was originally performed at Shakespeare’s Globe).  As well as telling the love story of Abelard and Heloise, it also provided debate about the Bible, and religious and philosophical beliefs at the time, putting Abelard (played by the appropriately charismatic David Sturzaker) squarely at odds with the Monk Bernard of Clairvaux (a superb Sam Crane).  The play required the audience’s concentration and full attention, but we were extremely well rewarded for it!  Jo Herbert also was great as Heloise, capturing her independent spirit and fierce intelligence.

The rest of the cast included Edward Peel as Fulbret (Heloise’s uncle), Rhiannon Oliver as Denise (Abelard’s sister), Julius D’Silva (King Louis VI), John Cummins and William Mannering as Alberic and Lotholf respectively (who provided much of the comic relief of the show).  They were – as well as the rest of the cast – excellent, without a single weak link.

There are emotions aplenty in this production – shock, grief, and surprisingly lots of humour.  The simple but effective scary stage set perfectly set the scene for the unfolding drama, and there was some lovely music provided by William Lyons, Rebecca Austen-Brown and Arngeir Hauksson, who remained on stage, sitting above the action throughout.

With a superb cast, and an utterly compelling story, this is a production that deserves to be seen.  Eternal Love is currently on tour in the UK, and if you get the chance to see it, I highly recommend it.

(For more information about this production, please click here.)

Read Full Post »

This film stars Gene Kelly in a rare dramatic role, and Natalie Wood, who at the time was a rising star. Natalie plays Marjorie Morgenstern (Morningstar is her ‘stage name’ which she uses later on in the film), a young and somewhat naive young woman, who falls in love with Noel Airman (Kelly), a man wo works at a summer camp every year, writing and directing the stage play, but who has dreams of seeing his own show on Broadway. Although her love is returned, Noel first refuses to make any sort of commitment to Marjorie, because she is just one of many women who fall for him every summer. He does subsequently realise his own feelings for her, but while her star is on the rise, his career is stagnant; he is unable to commit to anything, not just relationships, and their love causes pain and anguish to both of them.

It’s unusual to see Gene Kelly playing against type here. Noel was not an altogether sympathetic character, but I did recognise bits of him – we all know people who are lots of fun to be around, but don’t have the self-discipline to see anything through. (It should be noted that while I have posted a clip from the film which shows Kelly dancing, this movie is not a musical.) Anyway, Kelly does a good job in this role – I have always loved to see his magic feet, but film such as this show that he had a talent for serious acting too.

Natalie Wood is just beautiful as Marjorie – it’s hardly surprising that two men fall deeply in love with her in this film! She plays the part really well too, and I liked the character a lot. The development from an 18 year old girl into a confident young woman was believeable. Her parents, played by the always excellent Claire Trevor and Everett Sloane, were also great. Indeed, Sloane had one of the most touching scenes in the film as he stares out of the window looking at people skating in Central Park, and remembers his youth.

It’s quite a tearjerker this one – I found myself crying a couple of times during the film – not so much at the pain of the relationship between the two lead characters, but more because the ending was so inevitable (but I’m not giving it away). It’s a film I’d definitely like to see again, and it’s well worth watching, especially if you are a fan of either of the two main characters.

Year of release: 1958

Director: Irving Rapper

Producer: Milton Sperling

Writers: Herman Wouk (book), Everett Freeman

Main cast: Gene Kelly, Natalie Wood, Claire Trevor, Everett Sloane, Martin Milner, Carolyn Jones, Ed Wynn

Read Full Post »