Being a fan of the television series Poirot in which Suchet starred as Agatha Christie’s famous Belgian detective, my mind was trying to compute why Poirot was wearing women’s clothes!
But then Suchet was so good I forgot who he had been and thoroughly enjoyed his masterful performance. His comic timing is exceptional. As one reviewer commented: “His glare could paralyse a stampede of elephants in heat!”
The look on Suchet’s face, for example, when Lady Bracknell discovers the suitor for daughter Gwendolyn was `found’ in a railway station, was priceless. That’s one of the joys of watching the movie The Importance of Being Earnest which was captured live for cinemas from London’s Vaudeville Theatre – you get to see those small facial expressions which you can miss if you’re seated behind a tall person or at the back of the theatre!
Written shortly before Wilde fell foul of society’s unbending condemnation, The Importance of Being Earnest fizzes with wit as he delights in debunking social pretensions. It tells of two bachelor friends, upper crust dandy Algernon Moncrieff and the most reliable John Worthing J.P., who lead double lives to court the attentions of the desirable Gwendolyn Fairfax and Cecily Cardew. The two must then grapple with the consequences of their ruse and with the formidable Lady Bracknell.
This production played at the Vaudeville from June to November 2015. Together with Suchet the play also starred Emily Barber, Michael Benz, Philip Cumbus, Imogen Doel, Michele Dotrice and Richard O’Callaghan. All seem to do a good job in their roles but there’s no doubt Suchet, together with Wilde’s witty lines, are the stars of this production.
The Importance of Being Earnest is appearing in selected cinemas from February 6. For more information visit Sharmill Films.
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