July 14, 2020 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

LGBTQ+ Culture Coming to Life with Oscar Wilde on the Big Screen

“The Happy Prince”

Rated R

105 Minutes

Released October 5

Review By Kathryn Whitney Boole

 

“The Happy Prince” may be the closest we will come to actually viewing the great Irish humorist and playwright Oscar Wilde on the screen. Rupert Everett wrote, directed and stars in this film about the eccentric, flamboyant figurehead. Everett has performed in many of Wilde’s plays over his long career. In a discussion following my screening, Everett explained that he had found early on that he had a natural ability to communicate in Wilde’s language, which has a unique and specific melodic flow. He has a deep understanding of this exceptionally complex man and his times.

Wilde was extremely intelligent and well read, educated at Oxford and fluent in French and German. He was a poet, novelist, ostentatious celebrity and playwright. He represented the artistic milieu of his time, the “Belle Epoque” of the late 1800s. Had Wilde lived today he most certainly would be a social media megastar. What set him apart from other artists of the time was his highly developed sense of humor – his ability to laugh at the world and himself.

Everett began work on “The Happy Prince” eleven years ago. It’s common for an independent, low budget film to take that long to come to fruition and in this case it was also fortuitous in that Everett’s frustration with the process drove him to take on the roles of both director and actor. He handpicked his cast, and thus they represent probably a very accurate version of Wilde’s closest friends. In Everett’s words, no one is a “minor player,” no matter how little screen time they have. Every character is crucial to telling the story of the last days of this great artist.

Though he died at age 46, Wilde lived such a rich and varied life that it is impossible to summarize his impact on art and culture within a few paragraphs. Everett, in choosing to cover just the end of Wilde’s life, gives us the fascinating “tip of the iceberg” and tempts us to want to know more about him.

Everett noted that today history is often pushed to the periphery of our daily existence. We remember what happened on twitter up to two hours ago – the rest is forgotten. This is sad as understanding history has such a great effect on the strength of our society. Wilde’s time was the nascence of what our world is today. During the height of his influence the strict social mores of the 19th Century were beginning to break down. Artists and writers such as Wilde were finding the courage to break barriers. Conditions were beginning to form that gave birth to two world wars during the next century. Wilde’s comedy is born from the tragedy of one existence coming to an end, and a new world rising from the ashes. The positive to take from this movie is that such films can give our society a start at reigniting the curiosity that we so need mine the depths of history and stories of illustrious figures that have carved out their lives before us.

Kathryn Whitney Boole has spent most of her life in the entertainment industry, which has been the backdrop for remarkable adventures with extraordinary people.  She is a Talent Manager with Studio Talent Group in Santa Monica. [email protected]

Related Posts

North Hollywood Gay Latino Bar ‘Cobra’ Closed for Business

June 12, 2020

June 12, 2020

Instead adopts virtual entertainment method By Toi Creel The effect of COVID -19 has not only taken a toll on...

MIKA, Lil Nas X and More at GLAAD Awards

March 6, 2020

March 6, 2020

GLAAD, the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, today announced that recording artist and...

“Pose” Actress and Transgender Rights Advocate Angelica Ross Among the Honorees Truth Awards

March 3, 2020

March 3, 2020

The Annual Awards Show to Honor and Recognize LGBTQ + African Americans and Their Allies By Staff Writer Better Brothers...

Los Angeles Premiere of Latinx LGBTQ Film at Outfest Fusion

February 26, 2020

February 26, 2020

“Acuitzeramo” screening March 9 By Staff Writer Outfest Fusion presents the Los Angeles premiere of Cabaldana Alchemy’s short film “Acuitzeramo”...

Douglas: What to Expect When You’re Not Expecting

February 26, 2020

February 26, 2020

By Chole Marie Rivera The theater is dark and light casts a purple glow on the outline of a cartoon...

Q&A: Being Openly Gay at LA Opera

February 3, 2020

February 3, 2020

The scene: Eurydice always imagined that her wedding day would be a day she’d never forget. But after a tragic...

USC One Archives to Host Screening of Film on Black Trans Woman to Honor Black History Month

February 1, 2020

February 1, 2020

Meet Mary Jones, a black transgender woman born in New York in 1803. Described as a “man-monster” in the press. ...

Trans Flag Emoji Unveiled for More Cyber-Inclusion

January 31, 2020

January 31, 2020

Transgender texters, rejoice! For there is finally an emoji there for you!  Unicode Consortium, the company that sets industry standard...

HRC to Honor Dan Levy, Janelle Monáe at Award Ceremony in DTLA

January 27, 2020

January 27, 2020

Award Season is upon us, and the LGBTQ+ Community is not immune. HRC announced today that actor Dan Levy will...

VIDEO: South Coast Chorale’s Tribute to Gay & Civil Rights Activist

January 24, 2020

January 24, 2020

67 years ago, openly gay civil rights activist Bayard Rustin was arrested on a discriminatory, anti-gay “lewd conduct” charge for...

IN PHOTOS: WeHo Dodgeball at Sin City Classic LGBTQ+ Sports Festival

January 23, 2020

January 23, 2020

Hosted annually by The Greater Los Angeles Softball Association (GLASA), Sin City Classic brought together the United State’s finest athletes last weekend for three...

GUEST COLUMN: Queer Mindfulness Meditation

January 22, 2020

January 22, 2020

InsightLA is a non-profit meditation center offering practices of mindfulness and compassion that are both secular and Buddhist in origin. ...

Honoring Gay Rights & Civil Rights Activist Bayard Rustin

January 21, 2020

January 21, 2020

On this day in history 67 years ago, gay civil rights organizer Bayard Rustin was arrested on a discriminatory, anti-gay...

WeHo Dodgeball at the Sin City Classic LGBTQ+ Sports Festival

January 17, 2020

January 17, 2020

Hosted annually by The Greater Los Angeles Softball Association (GLASA), Sin City Classic brings together the United State’s finest athletes for a...

LONG BEACH PRIDE Unveils New Logo, Drops “Lesbian & Gay” From Name

January 16, 2020

January 16, 2020

Formerly known as  the Long Beach Lesbian and Gay Pride, the new and improved Long Beach Pride – the organization...