The Name of the Rose (1986)
Director: Jean-Jacques Annaud
Based on book by: Umberto Eco
Actors: Sean Connery, F. Murray Abraham, Christian Slater, Elya Baskin, Feodor Chaliapin Jr.,William Hickey, Michael Lonsdale, Ron Perlman.
Narrator: Dwight Weist
BRIDEY: Don’t it transport you, Bud? The old monastery, the monks, the robes, the singing…
BUD: The steam coming out of their mouths… Why was everything so gloomy back then?
BRIDEY: It wasn’t really gloomy. Modern folks just think of it as gloomy. Like in Monty Python and the Holy Grail. A medieval pall. Like we’re supposed to believe that all year round the grass was all dried up and yellow, with a dusting of snow onto it, and the skies always grey and dreary, like the sun didn’t want to come out, not never. I love the clothes the monks wore. Simple and elegant. Warm, too, no doubt, in spite of the itch.
BUD: When we’re rich I’ll buy you a whole wardrobe full of outfits like that. You can wear them every day if you want. Just don’t be lovin’ me up.
BRIDEY: Oh, no! They’ve entered the verboten library–they’re dead!
BUD: That’s where the monks store their hooter mags. Look! What’d I tell you?
BRIDEY: That’s no skin mag; it’s a book on anatomy.
BUD: If the middle ages had porn movies, what would the music be like?
BRIDEY: Hey nonny nonny boom chakalaka…
BUD: That hunchback looks like Hellboy.
HUNCHBACK: Me no know NAWthing!
BRIDEY: Look at those pompous idiots in their silly hats. Condemning the Franciscans for wanting the church to abandon worldly wealth. Now there’s an idea whose time has come–maybe do what Jesus told youse.
BUD: Those guys are all dressed up like Q on Startrek.
MONK: …he is guilty of having confused the love of poverty with the blind destruction of wealth and property. He is innocent of the crimes that have bathed your abbey in blood.
BUD: Has Pope John really been alive since then?
BRIDEY: He looks it.
BUD: …Isn’t that always the way? As soon as you want to do evil, someone’s always watching.
BRIDEY: The first book of Aristotle’s Poetics–I think I have that.
BUD: What?! It must be worth a fortune!
BRIDEY: No, fool, not the one. A paperback I bought to Frenchy’s.
BUD: …So the monks had their own soldiers?
BRIDEY: Yup. They were very wealthy. Just like the aristocrats.
BUD: The aristocats were just cats who sang in a band.
BRIDEY: No, they were the kings and queens and prices and dukes and barons and counts…and their retainers. How can a big stone thing like that burn? What’s in it that’s flammable?
BRIDEY: Ah, yes. Look, there she is. Do you suppose he’ll leave his beloved master and go chasing after her skirt?
NARRATOR: For: I’d learned from my master much that was wise and good and true. When at last we parted company he presented me with his eyeglasses. “You are still young,” he said, “‘though someday they may serve you well.” And in fact I’m wearing them now on my nose as I write these lines.
BUD: Top fifty?
BUD: Come on.
BRIDEY: It’s a good movie. I enjoyed watching it. Very…evocative. And accurate, far as I know, about the middle ages. I was really impressed at first–thought it was going to enlighten me in some way. But in the end it didn’t speak to my soul. There was nothing in it that I could see myself in or that challenged my brain. What about you?
BUD: Oh, it was good. Did Enya write this music?
BRIDEY: Sounds like it. She must be pretty old herself, having written all the music for the middles ages and the Celtic hoards.
BUD: She’s a hotty.
BRIDEY: An ageless beauty queen. Like me, eh Bud?
BUD: Like you, Bridey.
Bud and Bridey only watch old movies. If you’re looking for reviews of more recent films, check out Laura Seymour’s Flicks and Folios Film Review
By Wanda Waterman St. Louis, with Steven St. Louis.