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Anne Ku at Pitshanger Manor, where Algy made his home 2002
Anne Ku at Pitshanger Manor House, June 2002
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The importance of being earnest

Celebrating 100 years and the revival of Ealing Film Studios, the Ealing Film Festival opened with a preview of the new movie "The Importance of Being Earnest."

I first saw this play in Oxford when I was spending my summer studying 20th century British history. Since it's been awhile, I've forgotten what Oscar Wilde meant by "being earnest." It's a pun on the state of being earnest and that of being named Ernest.

Although the two newspaper reviews I had read today were both negative, I nevertheless decided to see the movie for myself.

The producer Barnaby Thompson spoke, followed by the director Oliver Parker. "What's in a name?" Indeed, he quoted Shakespeare. But we were to soon to find out that everything is in a name. The name being, of course, Earnest, or rather, Ernest Worthing.

Rupert Everett with a thick black moustache stars as a debt-ridden bachelor Algy, short for Algernon Moncrieff , who doesn't seem to do anything for a living other than lead a life of leisure, which includes playing the piano. Colin Firth (oh, how many of us came just to see him!) is John or Jack in the countryside of Hertfordshire, but Ernest Worthing in London. These two tall handsome gentlemen in their mid-thirties are about to propose to the women of their dreams Gwendolen and Cecily.

Algy's residence was shot at Pitshanger Manor House in Ealing. It's a place of most significance for I (yes, Anne Ku) will be playing on Vangelis' grand piano soon, for a wedding (see photo left).

It's a delightful comedy with Judi Dench as Lady Bracknell delivering Oscar Wilde's most famous lines. I'm also pleased to see Rupert Everett and Colin Firth sing and play the piano and guitar to woo their two ladies.

6 September 2002 Friday

Movie reviews
Ealing Film Festival
5 - 26 September 2002
UGC Cinema Ealing
links to movie photos
script of the play
some famous lines:
Algy: The only way to behave to a woman is to make love to her, if she is pretty, and to someone else, if she is plain.
Gwendolen: I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.
Jack: Gwendolen, it is a terrible thing for a man to find out suddenly that all his life he has been speaking nothing but the truth. Can you forgive me?
Lady Bracknell: Hesitation of any kind is a sign of mental decay in the young, of physical weakness in the old.
Cecily: Oh, I don't think I would care to catch a sensible man. I shouldn't know what to talk to him about.
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