Sylvia Beach interview on James Joyce and Shakespeare & Company

Sylvia Beach was an American-born bookseller and publisher who lived most of her life in Paris. She is known for her Paris bookstore, Shakespeare and Company, where she published James Joyce’s book, Ulysses , and encouraged the publication and sold copies of Ernest Hemingway’s first book, Three Stories and Ten Poems.

‘The Lost King’ Review: Sally Hawkins Stands Out as Amateur Historian Seeking the Truth

The search for the truth about Richard III gives Hawkins another excellent showcase for her talents.

Philippa Longley (Sally Hawkins) is having a difficult time in her life. She’s been overlooked for an exciting position at her job, she suffers from chronic fatigue, and she and her ex-husband John (Steve Coogan) are trying to raise their children together as they deal with their separation. After she sees a particularly affecting performance of Richard III, Philippa becomes fascinated by the title character, and the questionable legacy of the man—believing his past to be more fiction than fact. In Richard III, Philippa sees a bit of herself, another misunderstood person who deserves defending. In order to find out the truth about Richard III and his past, Philippa decides to try and find his remains that have long been lost to rumor.

On this journey, Philippa is often visited by Richard III (Harry Lloyd), who waits outside her home, quietly waiting for her assistance in finding his remains. It’s a bit of magical realism injected into this story of a person who followed her beliefs, as opposed to the “truths” that people tried to push on her. Philippa’s quest is largely influenced by her belief that Richard III is buried in a car park, and while Philippa certainly does her research on this matter, it’s her faith that she’s right that seems to guide her journey in The Lost King.

Directed by Stephen Frears (Dangerous LiaisonsHigh Fidelity) and written by Coogan and Jeff PopeThe Lost King often feels like this trio’s last collaboration, Philomena, which also found a woman (often assisted by Coogan) attempting to find the truth out about a sordid past. Like PhilomenaThe Lost King is about an underdog trying to take on the establishment, and how that challenge can often feel like fighting against a brick wall.

Philippa finds herself meeting with a group called the Richard III Society, who similarly wants to find out the truth about the departed king, stating that Shakespeare’s play was simply more attractive than the truth. As The Lost King goes on, it seems as though the same could be said about The Lost King itself. This is a decent underdog story that often works thanks to reliable performances, but it’s hard to imagine that the real story isn’t far more interesting than the one that we’re being presented. It’s as if Coogan and Pope almost don’t feel confidence that the original story is interesting on its own, instead, inserting in ghost kings to add a little something to this story of a woman trying to find a buried king.

Like so many of Frears’ films, The Lost King works because of the compelling cast on hand. Hawkins is naturally great as Philippa, a woman who has been passed over far too many times, and doesn’t want the same fate to continue for Richard III. Hawkins brings a vulnerability to the role, and yet a power and determination that sees her through this quest. The Lost King works not because of Frears, Pope or Coogan, but because Hawkins can bring a great amount of compassion and care to this character who just want to make things right—even if it’s for a long-dead royal.

Coogan is also quite good here, and the dynamic between him and Hawkins is also a welcome addition, as John becomes wary of Philippa at first, then slowly becomes warily supporting in her journey. Coogan’s arc is lovely, and some of the finest moments in The Lost King rely on watching these two eventually get closer together in a way they haven’t been in years. If we take anything from The Lost King, it’s that Coogan and Hawkins should certainly play off each other in more films

Like Frears’ most recent films, Florence Foster Jenkins and Victoria & AbdulThe Lost King is slightly meandering for the first half, building to a rousing payoff in the final act for these characters. While the journey to find King Richard III’s bones might drag at times, the third act manages to make for an excellent dénouement—even though it largely focuses on an excavation crew digging holes in a parking lot. Say what you will about Frears’ films, he knows how to win over an audience in the final act.

But it’s in the excitement of the film’s final third where the weight of the rest of the film can be felt. As Philippa seemingly gets closer to her goal, there’s a rousing joy to the end of this journey, especially when she comes face-to-face with the men along the way that have held her back. The real power and heft of this narrative all feels pushed to the backend of the film, which in hindsight, makes the first two acts feel fairly unremarkable by comparison.

Like Frears’ most recent films, Florence Foster Jenkins and Victoria & AbdulThe Lost King is slightly meandering for the first half, building to a rousing payoff in the final act for these characters. While the journey to find King Richard III’s bones might drag at times, the third act manages to make for an excellent dénouement—even though it largely focuses on an excavation crew digging holes in a parking lot. Say what you will about Frears’ films, he knows how to win over an audience in the final act.

But it’s in the excitement of the film’s final third where the weight of the rest of the film can be felt. As Philippa seemingly gets closer to her goal, there’s a rousing joy to the end of this journey, especially when she comes face-to-face with the men along the way that have held her back. The real power and heft of this narrative all feels pushed to the backend of the film, which in hindsight, makes the first two acts feel fairly unremarkable by comparison.

Source: ‘The Lost King’ Review: Sally Hawkins Stands Out as Amateur Historian Seeking the Truth | TIFF 2022

Valentine’s Day “As You Like It”

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, we’re sharing some of Shakespeare’s delightful romantic comedy, “As You Like It,” directed by Gaye Taylor Upchurch and produced by Folger Theatre in association with the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival. Cast member Antoinette Robinson introduces this scene, in which Rosalind (disguised as a shepherd boy named Ganymede) helps to tutor Orlando in the ways of courtship—while pretending to be his beloved, Rosalind. This lovely bit of wit and wordplay features Lindsay Alexandra Carter as Rosalind and Lorenzo Roberts as Orlando. For more on this production, visit https://bit.ly/3tRaVza

20 Shakespeare quotes about love

Orlando (Lorenzo Roberts) and Rosalind (Lindsay Alexandra Carter) flirt in the Forest of Arden in Shakespeare’s “As You Like It.” Folger Theatre, 2017. Photo: Teresa Wood

The word “love” appears 2,146 times in Shakespeare’s collected works (including a handful of “loves” and “loved”). Add to that 59 instances of “beloved” and 133 uses of “loving” and you’ve got yourself a “whole lotta love.” So, what does Shakespeare have to say about the subject? Here are 20 quotations from the Bard about love.

“What is Love?”

What does Shakespeare have to say about love? Let’s start with the basics.

“Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken.”

– Sonnet 116

In an interview on Shakespeare UnlimitedFolger Director Emerita Gail Kern Paster noted that Sonnet 116 is a frequent choice for wedding toasts. Barbara Mowat and Paul Werstine, editors of The Folger Shakespeare, wrote of this famous sonnet, “The poet here meditates on what he sees as the truest and strongest kind of love, that between minds. He defines such a union as unalterable and eternal.”

Berowne (Zachary Fine) professes his love for Rosaline (Kelsey Rainwater) in “Love’s Labor’s Lost.” With Yesenia Iglesias, Chani Wereley, Tonya Beckman, Amelia Pedlow. Folger Theatre, 2019. Photo: Brittany Diliberto.

“A lover’s eyes will gaze an eagle blind.
A lover’s ear will hear the lowest sound,
When the suspicious head of theft is stopped.
Love’s feeling is more soft and sensible
Than are the tender horns of cockled snails.
. . .
And when love speaks, the voice of all the gods
Make heaven drowsy with the harmony.”

– Love’s Labor’s Lost, Act 4, scene 3, lines 328 – 339

In Love’s Labor’s Lost, the King of Navarre and his three friends vow to spend three years cloistered from the world, studying, fasting, and seeing no women. But as soon as they’ve signed the contract, the Princess of France and her three pals show up to meet with the King. Of course, everyone immediately falls in love and the four men have to figure out how to extricate themselves from their solemn oaths. In Act 4, scene 3, Berowne, the wittiest of the four fellows, argues that love, not rigorous study, will make them better men. In fact, Berowne says, love is like a superpower that “gives to every power a double power.” The full speech is a beautiful testament to the gifts of love.


A Midsummer Night’s Dream
, Act 1, scene 1, lines 240 – 241
“Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind,
And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.”

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