Arms and the Man

A unique and terrible play, videotaped in performance, which is the idea, to collapse the film and stage dilemma on itself.

The quintessential Shaw, debunking a romantic myth, the one about soldiering. “Is that the one with the devil in it in red velvet, and a soldiers’ chorus?”

From Ernani to L’Aigle à deux têtes.

A splendid London production (Jonathan Lynn, dir.), smashing and detailed.

The romantic lover, too, “the higher love”. Naturally this can be seen as the result of his dramatic criticism, bad acting and bad plays, poor analysis in the direction, lead to empty postures and impostures, just like real life.

The great British public from time to time falls victim, as Whistler discovered. The point is simply carried to a further extreme in Major Barbara, a wartime contingency. “Do you know, you are the first man I ever met who did not take me seriously?”

Captain Bluntschli, the chocolate cream soldier, “I’m a professional soldier, I fight when I have to and am very glad to get out of it when I haven’t to. You’re only an amateur; you think fighting’s an amusement.”