An excerpt from my script review for On Chesil Beach which will be available 06/18/18:
2.) Plot Stability
Watch the Sun Dance, Darling.
That’s the title I would have picked, pulling from the Oscar Gold joke below…
The story wasn’t horrible, but it just threw a bunch of things together haphazardly…
Y’know, the more I think about it, the more the American Dad example fits as an appropriate analogy.
The story also reminded me of “the classics” I had to read for AP English in high school.
More often than not, a list of outdated books we had to read because “critics” said we must.
Were they good? Some of them, but more often than not it was just something that generation after generation was required to read.
I couldn’t find a clip, but there’s an old claymation Mark Twain movie, where Mark Twain says, “A classic is something everybody wants read, but nobody wants to read.”
That always stuck with me, and I was reminded of it when I read this script.
(The actual quote is, “’Classic’ a book which people praise, and don’t read.”)
What bugged me was the “tension” drawn out in the initial scene.
Florence is hesitant to have sex with her newlywed husband Edward.
Okay, I get that…but it just drags on.
Once we begin the flashbacks establishing the relationship that gets even worse…BECAUSE we never truly see Florence as “frigid” to Edward.
They’re very affectionate the more their relationship blossoms.
Aside from the “foreshadowing” scenes of a young Florence on the boat, which is never confirmed, we have no true motivation for why she would be repulsed by the act of intercourse.
It didn’t make sense.
You want to deal with the notion that a girl was presumably raped by her father in the 1950s, fine, but deal with it.
Make it apparent in how she interacts with potential suitors once she’s older.
Don’t have her be head of heels kissy kissy, and then once we’re in the bedroom…She’s Cold as Ice!
Besides that, I understood the theme at the end, even if it was panderingly depressing.
The point about their entire lives changing by Edward calling out to Florence as she walks away does prove a point, but at the same time if the sexual abuse suffered at the hands of her father did leave Florence emotionally unable to commit to Edward physically, then she could have been honest with him…if it was True Love, of course.
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