THE PRISONER - AGAIN!
19th April 2010
I am sitting here in the height of frustration, wonder and mild hysterics as my flight to the US tomorrow has been cancelled, due to a volcano none of us has ever heard of, my flight and everyone else's. Man proposes, God disposes. How small we really are and how truly helpless, although we believe so completely in our infallibility. Still I am luckier than most, those who have a job they should be at, somewhere else, families trying to get home from a holiday, a sick person to visit. It really is a wake up call as to who is really in charge! Certainly not us. I am or was off to the States and my little home in Boise, Idaho for a good dose of reality from my grandchildren, son and daughter in law. Well God and Nature has just given all of us a good dose of reality!
I was in an episode of the original "The Prisoner" and was invited to a screening last week of the new series at the British Film Institute. It was interesting and beautiful to look at and good, if you did not try to compare it to the original, which to my mind is in a league of its own. I understand from the Q and A session after the show that the poor writer was not given enough time to finish and hone the scripts and that the actors were being handed new pages every day. This always makes me very nervous, as clearly someone is NOT LEAVING THE WRITER ALONE TO DO HIS STUFF!
Jim Caviezel is not Patrick McGoohan and wisely makes no attempt to be him. He does look a bit lost in the show as if he really doesn't know what's going on, which if his script kept changing, does not surprise me. I have seen Jim Caviezel be very good, so for AA Gill to claim that neither he nor Patrick McGoohan can act, is a bit rich and very misguided. I remember seeing the reviews that Patrick got for his performance in Ibsen's "Brand", check them out Mr Gill. It's also interesting that so many "knowledgeable" people seem to know what Patrick had in mind when he wrote "The Prisoner", because I always remember his rather 'tongue in cheek' claims that "he hadn't the faintest idea!" I appeared in one of the BBC productions of Orwell's "1984" and this new show reminded me somewhat of that.
One thing I learned that I found quite interesting is that Jim Caviezel is a born again Christian. Patrick once said that although he was a lapsed Catholic and held no definite religious views, he would often go into churches of any denomination, sit at the back and gain some inner peace from it. You may or may not know that he had some strongly held beliefs about what he would or would not do on screen and I do know he did not like the idea of graphic violence or implicit sex scenes on the screen. He was asked to play James Bond on more than one occasion and declined based on Bond's various relationships with beautiful women and how they would be portrayed. Although having said that, I remember seeing Patrick's performance as the ruthless Edward 1 in "Braveheart", and the scene in which he literally threw his son's lover through an open window. It was so brutal and unexpected.
In any case I am sure many will find the new "Prisoner" good entertainment and enjoy it. Anyway you know my motto: never look back!
Everyone has said pretty much everything one can say about the Ministerial debates. I find myself rather lost for words regarding it all, except that to compare Nick Clegg with Winston Churchill is stretching it a bit far. I am not sure what the problem is, except that none of the candidates strikes me as particularly clever and far sighted and I do believe that this is what we need. We need a bit of a genius right now like a Pitt or Disraeli. The "elephant in the room" - the national debt is very frightening and I dont think any of them is really talking about it. Is it that they just dont know or is that they just not telling us what they do know? I know that we would ALL have to work incredibly hard to work our way out of it, which is the normal thing to do - work one's way out of debt. Forget 40 hour weeks and lots of holidays and compassionate leave for this and that. I know I sound a bit like an old reactionary, but many of us really dont know that we are born.
Perhaps if we start having imported food shortages, we will re-think our agricultural policy and start farming again. I really do think that would be a good thing. It seems barmy to me when we have a country as fertile as ours, with plenty of water, not to grow much of our own food.
I am not a political person at all actually, I've always believed that actors should stay out of politics- rogues and vagabonds are we. Keep your views private if possible and if you want to spout off about politics, go into politics.
Hope my next Blog is from the US of A!