[Reading] ➿ My Dinner With André By Wallace Shawn – Dolove.info
Changed my life. Reading this screenplay is even better than watching the movie As a conversation between two friends, this screenplay is full of honesty. My Dinner With Andre Is A Passionate, Volatile, And Humorous Encounter Between Two Friends Who Have Not Seen Each Other For A Long Time, And Decide To Catch Up On Each Others Lives Over Dinner Andre Gregory Is An Intense, Highly Experimental Theater Director And Playwright In Search Of Life S Meanings And Spiritual Revelations His Friend, Wally Shawn, Is An Actor And Playwright Living In New York Who Is Preoccupied With The Search For His Next Meal As Andre Recounts His Global Journeys Involving Esoteric Theatrical Experiments And Mystical Adventures, Wally Listens With Than Skepticism, As His Attitudes Shift Among Wonder, Puzzlement, Admiration, And Anger What Finally Emerges Is A Sensitive Portrait Of A Friendship That Survives And Transcends Contransting Assumptions About Love, Death, Art, And Man S Continuing Quest For Self Fulfillment A far ranging, howlingly funny, oddly moving, philosophically quite serious conversation between two men, speaking as themselves, the actor Wallace Shawn and the director Andre GregoryThis dialogue, between the seeker after transcendence, the wildly traveled and creatively risk embracing avant garde personallty of Gregory, and the ordinary man, Shawn, enjoying his friend s adventures but arguing for the philosophy of immanence Tell me, why do we require a trip to Mount Everest in order to be able to perceive one moment of reality I meanI mean, is Mount Everestreal than New York I mean, isn t New York real I mean, you see, I think if you could become fully aware of what existed in the cigar store next door to this restaurant, I think it would just blow your brains out I meanI mean, isn t there just as much reality to be perceived in the cigar store as there is on Mount Everest I like reading this eventhan seeing the movie because I can slow down and really take in what each man is saying To be read and treasured. GreaT movie if you don t mind watching people talk over dinner the entire time I really enjoyed the movie and wanted to remember the dialogue better, so I read the play The sheer number of times they said I mean exceeded, I am sure, legal limits and became insidiously monotonous after the first 10 pages Otherwise, I found some interesting insights into life and our society towards the end This was a great refresher on the movie which I believe is word for word with the play. I think that New York is the new model for the new concentration camp where the camp has been built by the inmates themselves and the inmates are the guards, and they have this pride in this thing they ve built They ve built their own prison And so they exist in a state of schizophrenia where they are both guards and prisoners And as a result, they no longer have having been lobotomized the capacity to leavethe prison they ve made or to even see it as a prison And then he went into his pocket, and he took out a seed for a tree and he said, This is a pine tree He put it in my hand and he said, Escape before it s too late. For me, this book is beyond criticism.As Randall Jarrell said of Leaves of Grass, whatever its faults, theydo not matter The movie and the screenplay have been one of the touchstone pieces of art in my life since I first saw the film in the theatre in 1981. ANDRE So they understood what it was about I mean, that of course poses the question of what was it about But it was something to do with living. Excellent movie but this book, which I ve read several times, is one of my favorite reading experiences ever It s the kind of book I have to reread every few years just to keep me creatively honest At times absurdly funny, at other times so dead serious that it might change your life, as hyperbolic as that may sound. I have heard for years from people whose opinions I trust that I must see My Dinner With Andre. So when I saw this screenplay at Goodwill for 1.33 pink tags were 30% off that day , I had to buy it I m really glad I did I loved it Still haven t seen the film, but I know I will one day.Excerpt ANDRE Well, look I remember a night It was about two weeks after my mother died, and I was in pretty bad shape, and I went out to dinner with three relatively close friends, two of whom had known my mother quite well, and all three of whom have known me for years And we went through that entire evening without me being able to, for a moment, get anywhere near what you know, not that I wanted to sit and have a dreary evening in which I was talking about all this pain that I was going through and everything really not at all But but the fact that nobody could say, Gee, what a shame about your mother, or How are you feeling But it was as if nothing had happened And everyone was just making these jokes and laughing And I got actually quite crazy, as a matter of fact, and one of these people mentioned a certain man whom I don t like very much, and I started screeching about he had just been found in the Bronx River, and his penis had dropped off from gonorrhea, and all kinds of insane things and of course I realized when I got home that I d just been desperate to break through this ice.WALLY Yeah ANDRE I mean, do you realize, Wally, if you brought that situation into a Tibetan home, that would just be so far out WALLY Right.ANDRE I mean, that would be simply so weird, if four Tibetans came together, and tragedy had just struck one of the ones, and they all spent the whole evening going Aha ha ha ehee hee hee oho ho Wo ho ho hoThose Tibetans would have looked at that and would have thought it was just the most unimaginable behavior, but for us that s common behavior.