Monday, April 27, 2009

The Last September by Elizabeth Bowen

Members of the Cork Chapter of the Irish Georgian Society visited Killinardrish and enjoyed a showing of the film 'The Last September' based on the novel by Elizabeth Bowen.

The central character, Lois, is a lively 19 year old living in Danielstown, Co Cork, the Georgian home of her uncle, Sir Richard Naylor and his wife Lady Myra. The film is set in 1920s when Irish Nationalists and the British Army were at loggerheads and assasinations and disturbances were occuring within close proximity of the house. In spite of this, the family are more preoccupied with tennis parties and dances than worrying that the unrest might be about to dramatically change their lives.

An English Army Captain Gerald Colthurst falls for Lois yet he is frowned upon as a soldier from Surrey of seemingly limited means, the Naylors being more concerned that relationships should be for money rather than love. However, Lois is drawn to a childhood friend and nationalist rebel, Peter who is in hiding in a nearby ruin. Lois is caught between the Anglo Irish world of her relatives and the Irish world that she is growing up in.

The film itself doesn't pass judgment on either side in this conflict. Instead it presents the complicated world around Lois during the 1920s and leaves it up to the viewers to form an opinion.

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