Olga, Masha, and Irina Prozoroff lead lonely and purposeless lives following the death of their father who has commanded the local army post. Olga attempts to find satisfaction in teaching ... See full summary »
While on seaside holiday with her girlfriend Mary, a pretty factory worker named Jenny is attracted to Alan, son of the owner of the mill where she works. When she agrees to spend a week ... See full summary »
A retired professor has returned to his estate to live with his beautiful young wife, Yelena. The estate originally belonged to his first wife, now deceased; her mother and brother still ... See full summary »
This play was a shocker when it first came out in 1912, and we can see
the reasons why even today, with its calm look at the difference in the
way in which society treats fornicators: for men it's winked at, for
women it's the worst sin that can be committed -- unless sanctified
after the fact by the benison of holy wedlock, in which case the only
consequence may be a baby born seven months after the wedding --
unremarkable and unremarked.
But society has changed so much in the 95 years since this play came
out, that the question remains as to how much power these waxworks can
hold for us? The 1928 silent version, directed by Elvey still works,
and the play still works here, almost entirely due to the role of
Jefcote, played with great humor and probity by Donald Pleasance. Even
through the accents, you can see a real person here, even though the
other roles are little more than statements of position: the calm
father who wants justice done, the mother of the wronged girl who
utters constant malapropisms, the boy's fiancée who drops him out of
Christian charity and her father who urges him to stand up to his
father until his interests are attacked..... only the Donald Pleasance
character shows grit, spunk and self-awareness.... and the piece is
directed to make him the focus.
The play, therefore, works as a character study. But for how much
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