She delivered all her lines with the finality and panache of a second year high school Spanish student — "siempre como culebra" — like Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2.
Her most embarassing role was not Cleopatra, but Catherine Holly in Suddenly, Last Summer.
She was every Hollywood film maker's icon of steamy female libido, the Freudess who drove every cocktail conversation of the Fifties; she was Lolita, fifteen years too late, and Tennessee Williams' soulmate, forever uncast (her role lost to Ava Gardner) in Night of the Iguana,†
had either of them only known. As she confessed, frequently and at length, her passions were "too intense" — and amazingly inarticulate. She deliberately associated herself with brilliant writers — Tennessee Williams, Edward Albee — to deliver their prose in agonies, in paroxysms of frump maternity. She never outlived National Velvet,
nor would rise above her level, nor could. She thought she was at the prom, and gave herself to her audiences like an aging porno queen, softly sarcastic, used and forgotten by morning.‡
†In real life, probably just a gecko.
‡Always bearing in mind she was 15 minutes late to her own funeral ;-)
Labels: Elizabeth Taylor, R.I.P.