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The Wild Duck

Wild Duck, The (Henri Safran, 1984) film of the play by Ibsen, wr. Tutte Lembow, John Lind, Dido Merwin, Henri Safran, Peter Smalley, dp Peter James; Liv Ullmann, Jeremy Irons, John Meillon, Lucinda Jones, Arthur Dignam, Michael Pate, Rhys McConnochie, Colin Croft, Marion Edward

This is Peter James' film. The cinematography is wonderful. Every frame is to die for.

There is little direction apparent. Arthur Dignam, an intelligent man, emphasises the wrong word in a line. The child, Lucinda Jones, looks as wild-eyed at joy as at despair - as does Liv Ullmann. Irons and Meillon look like themselves, which is a good thing, but has nothing to do with creating this fiction.

Which depends on the idea that: 'Self-deception is the stimulating principle of life'. That's a quotation from the film, and may be the 'quintessence of Ibsenism' (that's a quotation from G.B. Shaw).

See also: The Daughter.

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Garry Gillard | New: 11 December, 2014| Now: 30 June, 2020