October 9th, 2010

Alan

The Song of Lunch


photo BBC

Decisions, decisions yesterday evening, as New Tricks clashed with The Song of Lunch, starring Alan Rickman and Emma Thompson. Since I’m recording the whole series of New Tricks, I opted for Alan Rickman. The Song of Lunch is a film adaptation of a poem by Christopher Reid in which former lovers meet in a restaurant. To be honest, this didn’t sound too promising and I suspected it would have been better as a radio play. In fact, Alan Rickman was so utterly mesmerizing as a sad, disillusioned middle aged man who hates his job and has never got over the loss of his woman, that time whizzed by. Luckily, Emma Thompson didn’t have much to do. I was very impressed by the number of memorable images in the poetry and the downbeat way it expressed the character’s feelings as he walks through Bloomsbury (ghosts of Viginia Woolf and T S Eliot) to the Italian restaurant which has annoyingly (to him but not to her) changed, for lunch and the glass half full which for me is half empty. Well done BBC 2: you’re sometimes worth the licence fee.