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© Copyright Witley Press Ltd 2007-13 All rights reserved. | VAT Number GB 105 9739 56 | Company registered in England No. 561282
by Andrew Sinclair
Published by Timon Films
pages. Size 235 x 152 mm.
Date published: April 2014
Author website: www.undermilkwoodfilm.com
The impossible always happened in making Under Milk Wood. At times, its luck exceeded incredulity and vanished into Celtic mist. Like a necromancer juggling the elements, any Merlin of the screen had to mix the gold of the backers with the stars in their courses and come up a horoscope that guaranteed fair heavens and a safe return. To go at all, Under Milk Wood had to find a time when Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor and Peter O'Toole were all available to work and in this island, which was rather like fixing a week-end between Howard Hughes, Elizabeth the Second and Puck. Then the gold had to be conjured in double-quick time from the state and a merchant bank, both of whom were rightfully foolish enough to buck the wisdom of Wardour Street and think there could be enough profit as well as art in the wild warm words of that people's poet, Dylan Thomas. The problem of Under Milk Wood as a film lay in its bittiness, cross-cutting from voice to voice all the time without knowing whose voice it was. Seventy little stories to tell in ninety minutes in the life of a small fishing port. Richard Burton said to me that Under Milk Wood was all about religion, sex and death, but I did not understand his words until the film was over. Yet it worked because we were the servants of the dead Dylan Thomas, who caught the essence of Welsh sea towns and made an incantation of them. The film was the making of us. We were not making the film. In the New York Times, Judith Crist called the movie an instant classic and 'Pure Poetry'. It also starred in the Debrett of Welsh Acting. And Philip French in the Observer and the Guardian wrote that it reminded him of Joyce's Ulysses and Thornton Wilder's Our Town. Dylan's Llaregyb is the dream sea village of us all, the myth and the memory of our grandmothers across the world. Andrew Sinclair, director of Under Milk Wood. Includes 26 black and white still pictures from the film.
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