‘Battling Burtons’

taylor burton entrance shrew 11 10 09

There is no better example of the Battling Burtons than this great Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton  movie, The Taming of the Shrew. It is an entertaining version of Shakespeare’s classic play. The sparks fly between the two actors. The Supporting cast is a who’s who of great British actors; Michael York, Michael Hordern, Cyril Cusack, Victor Spinetti to name a few. The musical score by Nino Rota is fun and unforgettable, the costuming is magnificent. Franco Zeffirelli’s original version that was released in the movie theatres was butchered by some dufus towards the end of the film to make way for commercial breaks when first released for television viewing and was never restored when the movie was converted to DVD.

elizabeth taming shrew 1 11 10 09I hope someday, someone will find the lost footage and restore the scene where Petruchio shows Katerina that he has already had the milliner make her a beautiful crimson and brown velvet dress highlighted by the gold headress, worthy of a Queen to wear back to her younger sister Bianca’s wedding celebration. That missing scene sets up all that transpires between Katarina and Petruchio after his outburst over the ‘unfashionable fashions’ scene that rationalizes the actions of the characters from that moment on until the ending of the film. Me thinks, Elizabeth, Richard and Mr. Zeffirelli(who is still with us) would like all of you film buffs and historians out there to seek, find and restore that missing film footage of the original theatrical release version so that this movie can be enjoyed as initially edited. I wonder what version TCM will be showing tonight?

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