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65I love a good adaptation, but rarely do I find one. After finishing Oscar Wilde’s Lady Windermere’s Fan, I checked to see if my library carried a verison on film. They did.

I was pleasantly surprised with the movie. To tell you the truth, I rather enjoyed it.

It’s A Good Woman starring Helen Hunt as Ms. Erlynne and Scarlett Johansson as Lady Windermere. There were few changes from the play. The setting was moved to Italy and in the 1930’s, neither I felt detracted from the story. The Windermere’s have only been married for one year and do not have a child yet. And the “big secret” is revealed in a different way, as is Ms. Erlynne’s connection to Lord Windermere, who is no longer a Lord but a wealthy American businessman.

It was  a good adaptation and made me want to read the play again. I found Wilde’s wit more alive on screen than when I originally read the play. All those one liners in the midst of card conversations made sense and the caricature of women even better.

I felt I had a better sense and appreciation for the satire.

I felt it worth my time and definitely will be revisiting the play.

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Lady Windermere’s Fan is a four act play by Oscar Wilde that “offers a splendidly satirical view of society’s obsessive regard for appearances 18784127rather than reality.”

I’ve found what I enjoy about plays is that they’re such a quiet read. If I’m needing a little fiction retreat, but don’t have the time to finish a novel a play works best! I enjoyed Lady Windermere’s Fan and the satire within.

Lady Windermere suspects her husband is having an affair and then her husband invites this woman to her birthday ball. Lady Windermere is upset and falls for the attention and poetic words of Lord Darlington, who invites her to runaway with him.

Lady Windermere must decide whether she will be a woman of high moral character and remain unstained by Lord Darlington’s advance or accept his request as revenge against her husband. The one who saves her is Mrs. Erlynne, the woman who she suspected her husband having an affair. To find out the rest, you must read it.

Here are some of my favorite quotes from the play:

  • “Oh, gossip is charming! History is merely gossip. But scandal is gossip made tedious by morality. Now I never moralize. A man who moralizes is usually a hypocrite, and a woman who moralizes is invariably plain.” Cecil Graham, Act 3
  • “Repentance is quite out of date. And besides, if a woman really repents, she has to go to a bad dressmaker, otherwise no one believes her.” Mrs. Erlynne, Act 4
  • “There is the same world for all of us, and good and evil, sin and innocence, go through it hand in hand. To shut one’s eyes to half of life that one may live securely is as though one blinded oneself that one might walk with more safety in a land of pit and precipice.” Lady Windermere, Act 4

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