Wednesday, May 11, 2011

"Let's Watch A Katharine Hepburn Movie"

This post is at the invitation of Andrew at Encore Entertainment.  Andrew, whose all-time screen idol is Katharine Hepburn (a good choice), is keeping the torch burning for her by celebrating her birthday on his blog tomorrow.

He asked fellow movie-lovers to select our favorite Kate Hepburn performance, and send him a few lines, or create a post of our own.

There are so many great Hepburn moments, and favorite roles.  But the choice, for me, was an easy one.  If my friends suddenly said, "Let's watch a Kate Hepburn film", I would immediately select "The Lion in Winter".

This is my favorite of Hepburn's performances in one of my all-time favorite movies.

This is Kate's crowning achievement, her ultimate role, which combines the best of her talents with unforgettable ferocity and vulnerability.  Kate's phrasing and command of her presence on-screen lends dramatic weight to her role as Eleanor of Aquitaine.  Her emotions well up with such ease, and she has deep resources of anger and pain. She is able to summon these, sometimes all at once, for very complex readings that tug at our conflicting emotions while our minds are being engaged, and challenged.  Hepburn has complete mastery of her character and the history of the period. 

All the while, a blazing intelligence pervades her, especially in the intensity with which she regards her co-stars with her eyes.  Even when she is playing ruthless, we are always with her, hanging on every word.  Hepburn has always been both funny and no-nonsense, both sympathetic and harsh, and "The Lion in Winter" was the perfect vehicle for her great talent.

I think I may watch it now!


  1. Definitely one of the great film performances ever.

  2. It's a superb performance, with a fantastic role to take on. By turns vulnerable and malicious Katherine Eleanor of Aquitaine is the only way you can now imagine the role being done.

    Geat write up too.

  3. So, I think I said. It's a fantastic movie with a great part for Kate that she totally sinks her teeth into - so much so it's impossible to think of Eleanor of Acquitaine without thinking of Hepburn.

    I think I may watch it (again) this week as a response to the multiple recommendations.

  4. Andrew: It's a good choice!
    Ben: Thank you for posting again! I value your comments and would hate to lose any of them.