Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Overlooked Movies: The Dead

If you've never read James Joyce's "The Dead," which is one of the world's great short stories, you can still enjoy this great movie.  But if you haven't read the story, your life is the poorer.  The same is true if you've read the story and haven't seen the movie.   If you've done both already, then you know what I'm talking about.

The setting is a dinner party on the evening epiphany, Twelfth Night.  The guests arrive and talk, and we see and hear them.  We see other things in the house, and it's all warm and sad and amusing.  Virtually plotless, but still engrossing.  

The party leads up to the concluding part of the story, when Gabriel Conroy (Donal McCann) and his wife, Gretta (Anjelica Huston) return to their hotel.  Gretta tells Gabriel a story she's kept from him for all their married lives.  It's about a boy named Michael Furey, who might have died for his love of her.  The conclusion of the movie is pretty much straight of of the story as we hear Gabriel's thoughts (the final paragraph of the story).  It's as moving and effective as anything you'll see (or hear).

I've thought about this movie a good bit over the last few weeks, and I hope that Judy knew she'd married her Michael Furey.  I think she did. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm sure she did, Bill.

I was just reading an interview with Anjelica Huston talking about how much the movie, her last with her father, meant to her.