improvised theatre

May 21, 2006

Through the windows

A quick word of praise for one of my earliest childhood heroes - yes, going back even before the days of Jason Donovan worship - the great Play School presenter Floella Benjamin.

Where is she? What has she been doing? Questions I have long been musing on, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Well, we need wonder no longer; she has a part in the BBC's new adaptation of Alan Hollinghurst's slightly unpleasant but strangely compelling novel The Line of Beauty.

And to be honest, Floella Benjamin was a bit of a highlight for me. Not that I'm knocking the typically well-cast, well-shot adaptation - Tim McInnerny is absolutely superb and it's grand to see Dan Stevens looking so pretty in the central role (if he'd bothered turning up to Footlights committee meetings looking so impeccably coiffured my minutes might have taken quite a different direction). But there's something about the production that feels a wee bit stilted, to me at least. Maybe it's all the old Tories in it.

Shame they didn't think of casting Big Ted.

Posted by James Lark at May 21, 2006 06:25 PM

I wasn't too interested in any of the characters really, although I'm told the novel is very good. I did however notice Floella Benjamin, and pointed her out to the friend I was watching it with, who didn't seem nearly as excited as I was.

Posted by: Mary at May 22, 2006 03:58 PM

The novel is okay, but you won't be any more interested in the characters - Hollinghurst seems to write all about people I wouldn't want to meet, ever.

You were, of course, quite right in being excited about Floella.

Posted by: James Lark at May 22, 2006 08:06 PM