Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Middle Age Spread


Middle Age Spread

The Film Archive screens John Reid’s hilarious film adaptation of Roger Hall’s play. Middle Age Spread (1979) is no mere parading of middle class morality. Wit and thoughtfulness are judiciously mixed. And there is a bonus in the excellent original music by Stephen McCurdy.

Middle Age Spread centres on Colin, the deputy principal of a city high school. He’s a reluctant applicant for the principal’s job, but the pressures of school life don’t encourage him to seek this promotion.

At home, his wife Elizabeth has settled into the role of an increasingly disinterested partner. As the film begins, she’s giving a dinner party to which four friends have been invited. One of them is Judy, a teacher who has had a temporary job at Colin’s school. She’s with her husband but the two have had a long separation and have been reconciled only for the sake of the children.

Two other neighbours complete the dinner party and what happens during the evening makes for a unique “comedy of bad manners.”

The dinner party is only a part of this film – flashbacks reveal the secrets of all the dinner guests, most importantly the slow-growing love affair between Colin (who has taken up jogging in an effort to combat his spreading waistline) and Judy. The climax, which ends the dinner and also the film, is electric.

“Roger Hall’s play, and Keith Aberdein’s script bring the feelings and fears of this rampantly middle-class, slightly weathered, uncomfortably ‘real’ bevy of people together under one roof to begin their comic dissection of our days in suburbia and beyond. Set around ‘a dinner party’ these six people are the trappings of (products of?) and trapped by their own self-inflicted materialistic greed – people, who it seems, have got everything, but end up with nothing more, nothing less… The film is at its most hilarious when pinpointing acute areas of pretense, leaving very few subjects untouched that are dear to all our hearts... The cast, the crew, producer and director (plus of course the two writers) are to be congratulated. They have made a very valid, and truthfully reflective film. It’s also bloody funny, if I neglected to make that point!” - Michael Heath, Evening Post, 30 June 1979

The Middle Age Spread will screen at the Film Archive, Wellington, at 7pm on February the 20th, 21st, 22nd and 23rd.


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Max Rashbrooke: Review - The NZSO And Nature

This was a lovely, varied concert with an obvious theme based on the natural world. It kicked off with Mendelssohn's sparkling Hebrides Overture, which had a wonderfully taut spring right from the start, and great colour from the woodwinds, especially the clarinets. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Q&A: Prue Hyman On ‘Hopes Dashed?’

For Scoop Review of Books, Alison McCulloch interviewed Prue Hyman about her new book, part of the BWB Texts series, Hopes Dashed? The Economics of Gender Inequality More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Chuck Berry (And James Comey, And Bill English)

Back when many people were still treating rock’n’roll as a passing fad – was calypso going to be the new thing? – Chuck Berry knew that it had changed popular music forever. What is even more astonishing is that this 30-ish black r&b musician from a middle class family in St Louis could manage to recreate the world of white teenagers, at a time when the very notion of a “teenager” had just been invented. More>>

Howard Davis Review:
The Baroque Fusion Of L'arpeggiata

Named after a toccata by German composer Girolamo Kapsberger, L'Arpeggiata produces its unmistakable sonority mainly from the resonance of plucked strings, creating a tightly-woven acoustic texture that is both idiosyncratic and immediately identifiable. Director Christina Pluhar engenders this distinctive tonality associated with the ensemble she founded in 2000 by inviting musicians and vocalists from around the world to collaborate on specific projects illuminated by her musicological research. More>>

African Masks And Sculpture: Attic Discovery On Display At Expressions Whirinaki

Ranging from masks studded with nails and shards of glass to statues laden with magical metal, the works are from ethnic groups in nine countries ranging from Ivory Coast to the Democratic Republic of the Congo. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news