Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Monday, 13 October 2014
I'm plucking up the courage to leave the house - it's filthy out there.
Last night we watched 'A Man For All Seasons' again and - also again - I wonder why I want to abuse Vanessa Redgrave every time I see her. Actually, I feel the same way about all of the Redgrave dynasty, but Vanessa would be my first attack before moving on to the rest of her family.
I don't remember her speaking a word as Ann Boleyn in the 1966 film, so she packed as many fleeting and meaningless expressions into her face as she could in the short time allowed for her appearance - mouth opening and closing, head first one way then the other, eyes running from Henry's chin to his hair and then back down again, moving forward then back, making sure she was never out of shot or focus... 'The look of love'.
During the 1960s, she made up for the lack of lines in the film by standing in Trafalgar Square and shouting revolutionary bollocks at an adoring crowd through a Tannoy system. I didn't believe her even when I was 16 and believed everyone else.
She is/was a hard-working actor who makes/made it look hard as well. Like him or not, Laurence Olivier made it look easy, simply because - by his own admission - he had sold his soul to the Devil.
All you had to do was look into his eyes to see how empty he was, and how easy it was for the character to invade him, when it is supposed to be the other way round. Plenty of space for everyone.
This sounds very personal, and I dread the thought of upsetting V.R. if she actually read it, but I don't think there is much chance of that (!), and I'm sure she has improved vastly with age.