Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Looks can only get you so far…

         I must begin this post with an apology: my recent trip to Edinburgh and subsequent moving house has left me internet-less over the past few weeks, and whilst this does suggest that it’s about time I scrimped and saved to replace my ancient Nokia with a more modern phone, it has also given me plenty of blogging inspiration.


Whoever’s been to the Edinburgh Fringe before will know that it’s a wonderful array of money-spending madness. Whether you’re being gently harassed with a smile on the Mile, laughing like a pig on ecstasy in the midst of a sketch show or contemplating murder in a down-right dismal production of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, it’s quite an event.

Amongst the crap…and there is a lot of crap - there are gems. This year’s highlights were a quirky production of ‘When Women Wee’, which consists of 5 girls playing 25 different women going in and out of a night club cubicle, dance troupe Flawless and the Nineteen Eighty-Four meets Glee-esque ‘Melody Blog’.
Although, perhaps what stood out most, was ‘Action to the Word’ and each of their various productions. From a Tim Burton like new musical: 'Constance and Sinestra', to a cut-throat interpretation of 'Titus Andronicus' - the company stood out, not to mention their startlingly homoerotic version of 'Clockwork Orange', which stunned me, my friends and reviewers alike.

However, whilst the man, who played Clockwork’s protagonist Alex, Martin McCreadie undoubtedly deserves a great deal of credit for his incredible acting ability, I can’t help but think that if McCreadie weren’t so McDreamy, the production would have failed to receive quite the same response, or at least the same audience ratings.
It is a fact that acting success often goes hand in hand with good looks. Hollywood icons are Hollywood icons for more than just their sought after talent, their looks play an important part too. Would Brad Pitt be the phenomenon he is today, without his chiselled features and would anyone have cared for Marilyn Monroe, had she not had that effortless smile? Probably not.

The reality is that, whilst film and theatre often aim to give an honest interpretation of life, they are also very visual mediums…if someone is going to spend a couple of hours watching an actor perform, innately they want to spend hours watching someone visually or at least stylistically pleasing, rather than someone who lacks in both of those departments.
Looks guarantee that even when a script drags, the film doesn’t because you could quite happily gaze at the actors and actresses it beholds, even if the film were mute. Would boys turn up to Transformers without the likes of Megan Fox and Rosie Huntington-Whitely and would girls bother with Twilight had it not featured its fair share of alien like abs and flawless face screen shots - Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner? Again, probably not.
Like fashion, film and theatre follow beauty because it pulls in the ratings, and makes for picture perfect posters or even, and perhaps more wonderfully, clothes, as the recent Dolce & Gabbana collection demonstrates, with its selection of Marlon Brando t-shirts and James Dean vests.

The design duo unashamedly celebrate the appeal of aesthetics in film by placing the most handsome  of Hollywood icons in the forefront of their designs; their appeal is universal and there is nothing wrong with it. Of course, you can and should be successful, if you have the talent, whether you are Timothy Spall or Tom Cruise…it’s just looks help, and who doesn't love to look at someone beautiful?


  1. I've always wanted to go to Edinburgh fringe but never had the chance - looks amazing! Glad you had fun!

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  2. You posts are always so interesting :)
    Love it

  3. this is so true. you write so intresting, in an originally way! unique! :)