General > Beckett, Bond, Pinter discussion

R.I.P. Harold Pinter


Michael Swart:
Commemorated Pinter’s death with a screening of Turtle Diary:
- Do you like working in a bookstore?
- I love it. I love it.
- All their shapes and sizes.
- Of what?
- The customers.
Pinter’s work never lost its edge. Celebration and Sleuth were just as funny and exciting on first viewing as The Birthday Party or The Dumb Waiter. His writing has a unique quality. Humour, menace, and compassion.

Iain Fisher:
Michael Gambon, currently acting in No Man's Land, says Pinter asked him to read some lines at his funeral.  The lines come from No Mans Land.

"I might even show you my photograph album.  You might even see a face in it which might remind you of your own, of what you once were.  You might see faces of others, in shadow, or cheeks of others, turning, or jaws, or backs of necks, or eyes, dark under hats, which remind you of others, whom you once knew, whom you thought long dead, but from whom you will still receive a sidelong glance, if you can face the good ghost.  Allow the love of the good ghost.  They possess all that emotion... trapped.  Bow to it.  It will assuredly never release them, but who knows... what relief... it may give to them... who knows how they may quicken... in their chains, in their glass jars.  You think it cruel... to quicken them, when they are fixed, imprisoned?  Deeply, deeply, they wish to respond to your touch, to your look, and when you smile, their joy... is unbounded.  And so I say to you, tender the dead, as you yourself would be tendered, now, in what you would describe as your life."

Iain Fisher:
Sad because he was one of the great playwrights, and is performed in both mainstream theatres No Man's Land is on in the West End of London) and the fringe (Party Time and Mountain Language on the London fringe).

My favourite Pinter play- Mountain Language.  Not his best known, in terms of power not up there with The Caretaker etc, and very short, but it still continues to affect me.  There is politics but it is underpinned by Pinter's observation of people and the way language can be irrelevant to understanding.  It also has Pinter's unique sense of dry humour.


Harold Pinter died Christmas Eve at the age of seventy-eight. R.I.P


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