Review: Gabby Giffords Won’t Back Down

On January 8, 2011, Gabby Giffords was shot in the head while participating in a Congress at Your Corner meet-and-greet with her constituents. Several of them died. Giffords was lucky in that she survived, though where the bullet hit meant that she’d have to deal with paralysis on the right side of her body, partial … Continue reading Review: Gabby Giffords Won’t Back Down

The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: The Iceman Cometh

Lee Marvin as Hickey and Hildy Brooks as Margie in John Frankenheimer's adaptation of The Iceman Cometh In 1936, Eugene O’Neill would become the first (and only) American playwright to win the Nobel Prize for Literature, “for the power, honesty and deep-felt emotions of his dramatic works, which embody an original concept of tragedy” (Nobel … Continue reading The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: The Iceman Cometh

The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Ah, Wilderness!

Eric Linden as Richard Miller and Helen Flint as Belle in Ah, Wilderness! (1935) Ah, Wilderness! is a bit of an anomaly in the Eugene O'Neill canon, in that it's a comedy. It is, in fact, his only full length comedy. Coming after the 5-hour Strange Interlude and (right after) the play cycle Mourning Becomes … Continue reading The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Ah, Wilderness!

The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Mourning Becomes Electra

Rosalind Russell and Michael Redgrave in Mourning Becomes Electra (1947) The dead! Why can't the dead die! -Lavinia Mannon, The Haunted, Act Four (O'Neill 372) After the 5-hour Strange Interlude, which was the height of his experimental phase, Eugene O’Neill wrote the three-play cycle Mourning Becomes Electra, which is the height of his Greek tragedy … Continue reading The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Mourning Becomes Electra

The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Strange Interlude

Norma Shearer, Alexander Kirkland, and Clark Gable in Strange Interlude (1932) While the best of O'Neill's Greek tragedy-inspired plays and realistic plays were in the future, we now come to the culmination of his experimental plays. Strange Interlude was the third play to win him a Pulitzer Prize and the last one he'd win while … Continue reading The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Strange Interlude

The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Desire Under the Elms

Sophia Loren and Anthony Perkins in Desire Under the Elms Eugene O'Neill's plays can be grouped into three or four major categories. In Beyond the Horizon and Anna Christie, O’Neill wrote realistic plays with melodramatic elements. Starting with The Emperor Jones and culminating in Strange Interlude (which we'll discuss in the next post), O'Neill dabbled … Continue reading The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Desire Under the Elms

The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: The Emperor Jones

Paul Robeson as The Emperor Jones Between Beyond the Horizon and Anna Christie comes The Emperor Jones. Charles S. Gilpin originated the role of Brutus Jones, but had a falling out with O'Neill when the playwright refused to remove the N-word from the play, which Gilpin would often change to "Negro" during performances. For the … Continue reading The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: The Emperor Jones

The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Anna Christie

Greta Garbo as Anna Christie Next up on the list of important O'Neill plays is Anna Christie, which won O'Neill his second Pulitzer Prize, just two years after he won for Beyond the Horizon.  It was also the first play of his to be adapted to the screen, in a 1923 silent version directed by … Continue reading The Plays of Eugene O’Neill: Anna Christie

Movie Blurbs and Initial Impressions, COVID edition

Since I haven't posted many reviews here since the pandemic began, outside of the Oscar Nominated Shorts (film festivals canceled, movie theaters closed, unable to get a press pass to virtual ones), here's a smattering of film and limited series reviews that I posted on Letterboxd during the pandemic (some of which have been slightly … Continue reading Movie Blurbs and Initial Impressions, COVID edition

Oscar Nominated Shorts — Documentary

I've only seen the nominated documentary shorts one time previous, when the subjects (in order) were: a video showing a drone strike on journalists in Baghdad, the shameful history of throwing acid in women's faces in Pakistan, the aftermath of the Sendai earthquake and tsunami, and a barber in Birmingham who marched for Civil Rights … Continue reading Oscar Nominated Shorts — Documentary