'Tis Pity She's a Whore - John Ford, Martin Wiggins I hadn’t planned on reading ’Tis Pity She’s A Whore when I saw Elizabeth’s review, though I enjoyed the resulting thread. In fact, at first I thought it was about a new book by this John Ford. The title certainly sounded like something he would write. But Fate had other plans when she revealed an Italian film version of it while I was browsing on Netflix. I figured I hadn’t much to lose in devoting a couple of hours to reading the play and watching the movie.

Though this isn’t “Roger & Ebert,” I’ll dispense with the film first: Don’t bother. It cuts all of the characters and scenes that make the play so much fun to read and we’re left with a passionless, sterile and cold(1) movie that looks good but has no soul.

As to the play, I liked it. It’s a lot of fun to read. If I had to compare it to a modern equivalent, I’d say it’s like a decent action film helmed by a competent director. There are a lot of explosions and a ridiculously over-the-top plot but the dialog crackles and the action is nonstop; it’s fun while you’re sitting there munching popcorn.

(1) And I mean “cold” in a very literal sense: The entire movie is set in a cold, north Italian winter. But also “cold” in the figurative sense: There’s only one scene where Annabella and Giovanni are in a “passionate” embrace. The rest of the time, the characters stand apart reciting their lines.