Circles, π, Fifty Ships, and Michael Kitchen — boundless in their beauty and perfection.
Circles, π, Fifty Ships, and Michael Kitchen — boundless in their beauty and perfection.
Mr. Kitchen is possibly the eighth wonder of the world. Never flashy … but nevertheless the center of every frame in which he appears. – hikari
From John Powers’s review of Foyle’s War on NPR:
What makes the whole thing irresistible is Michael Kitchen’s enthralling performance as Foyle, who, in his reticence, sly humor and triumphant decency, is our fantasy of the ideal Englishman.
Foyle, the master of brevity, knows when he’s said enough to bring the guilty party to his knees.
And Michael Kitchen knows how to use his incomparable mouth shrug and eyes to maximum effect.Continue reading
Goodbye, Mr. Foyle.
John Donne said, “No man is an island, entire of itself.” but, I’d argue, that Foyle comes as close to proving him wrong as any fictional character and MK played that perfectly.
This is inspired. Thank you for sharing, KT. In light of your comment, I particularly got a kick out of this New Yorker cartoon. →
Created and written almost entirely by bestselling novelist Anthony Horowitz, “Foyle’s War” is the Mona Lisa of television: small, quiet, utterly hypnotic and mysteriously perfect.
A small and often silent man, as kind as he is morally rigorous, Foyle stands guard over basic humanity as the whirlwind of war and modernity threatens to uproot the good with the bad. Year after year, he has been brought to vivid vibrant life by Kitchen, an actor of rare and controlled brilliance. Each season, he gave the performance of a hundred lifetimes while appearing to do little more than shrug off his coat, bite his lip and refuse endless offers of tea.
…the final episode of the series, “Elise,” is what the American-based Acorn TV, which has co-produced the series since its return, will submit in all the relevant television movie categories — some of which it better win, despite the low-key nature of its radiance and, perhaps more significant, the famous long-standing refusal of its leading man to do any publicity.
Neither should matter at all if the awards are truly about excellence.
Kivrin has written a lovely Foyle vignette that picks up after this final scene.Continue reading
Michael Kitchen is all sun-kissed gorgeousness and gentlemanly charm as Berkeley Cole in Out of Africa.Continue reading
Michael Kitchen makes even the most mundane dialogue interesting to watch.
A Times critic put it another way (Nov. 29, 2003):
“…Michael Kitchen — an actor capable of making even the most banal dialogue sound as if Chekhov had written it.”Continue reading
Beautiful Michael Kitchen/Richard Crane.
Thank you KF, you always make my day! Perhaps Reckless should have been titled Breathless? At least that’s how MK playing Richard Crane leaves me feeling. ;- )
Seems we do a good job of making each other’s day. Completely agree about that feeling of breathlessness MK brings on whenever he appears in Reckless. 🙂
Nope, I wouldn’t either, Richard.Continue reading
Another one of the gorgeous closeup shots of Michael Kitchen from A Lesson in Murder. ****Continue reading
Freud reminisces about happier times when von Fleischl generously picked up the tab and took him under his wing. Even a big, bushy beard can’t hide the adorableness of Michael Kitchen’s smile that’s replicated the following year in Out of Africa.Continue reading
Having an actor as gifted and exacting as Michael Kitchen interpret one’s work is undoubtedly a huge boon to writers, but it’s not without its challenges as Anthony Horowitz has described in interviews:
Michael is as responsible as I am for the character of Foyle. Michael Kitchen has always been one of our most revered actors here in Britain. He had never done a long-running television series until Foyle’s War. The only reason he took it on, I think, was because I was able to persuade him that it wouldn’t just be a case of him getting a thud of an envelope through a door every two weeks with a new script; he would be very much part of the creative process. That is what we have done for nearly ten years. It’s not always been easy. Michael is very demanding. One of the funny things about him is that he’s the only actor I know who demands fewer lines. He’ll look at a speech and say to me, “Actually I can do all of that — five lines — with one look.” And the annoying thing is, he’s always right; he can — which means I have to write more dialogue for the other actors to fill out the episode. – PBS Q&A for Series 7
Curiously, he had never taken the lead in a long series. In part, this may have been down to his reputation for being ‘difficult’. …Was he difficult? He was certainly demanding – utterly focused on the character with a rigid determination to ensure that the integrity and the quality of the drama would never be compromised. Sometimes, he would cut or rewrite a scene hours before it was due to be filmed, and I won’t pretend that this wasn’t frustrating. But for him the performance was everything, and the result is there on the screen. I have no doubt at all that a huge part of the success of the show was down to Michael. – Daily Mail (Jan. 5, 2008)
In The Last Contract Michael Kitchen excels in exuding the ice-cold professionalism of a high-end hired assassin.
Hard to believe this is the same man behind the scenes!Continue reading
“A donation, perhaps? One of the refugee funds?”
“Yes, sir. Good idea.”
George Briggs’s story of the oleander tree on International Picnic Day.Continue reading
A harrowing separation that no parent or child should have to suffer, but at least one could argue that Operation Pied Piper was carried out with the intent of protecting the welfare of children during a desperate time of war. No such argument can be made about the current Trump administration border policy.
This Fathers Days, thinking of the bond I had with my late father and the one I have now with my son. We now live… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…—
Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) June 17, 2018
Andrew’s unexpected early morning arrival brings Foyle downstairs to the kitchen in his pajamas.
“Hello, Dad.”Continue reading
Simon Hix (@simonjhix) June 06, 2018
Glad to know Michael Kitchen is enjoying this Spring bank holiday weekend in Poole Harbour – doing some sailing presumably in addition to browsing books. Wish I were there in the beautiful weather taking in the magnificent sights.
The market day donation to Bowel Cancer UK was made in honor of powerboat racer and sailing enthusiast, Robin Culpan. Michael Kitchen attended Culpan’s memorial on January 11 and opened the service with a reading of John Masefield’s
Having failed to receive service in their train’s dining car, Frau Messner and Peter go in search of a meal in Frankfurt.
Since mine own doors refuse to entertain me,
I’ll knock elsewhere, to see if they’ll disdain me.
– The Comedy of Errors
Published last month in Old Wyves’ Tales are excerpts from the memoirs of Chris Lowe, the head of English at City of Leicester Boys Grammar School while Michael Kitchen was in attendance:
I suppose my most famous pupil was Michael Kitchen, who became a star of the Royal Shakespeare Company in the seventies and eventually starred in the TV series Foyle’s War. He was a marvellous actor even at school, and a natural for RADA where he went at eighteen. His style was, and is, to play himself then subtly transmogify that into the character he was playing. It is very understated, but brilliantly done. One day Mary (Presumably Mrs Lowe?) and I took the fourteen-year-old Michael to the RSC costume department in Stratford On Avon to choose a pile of Shakespearean costumes for the school play. I don’t suppose it had any dramatic effect on him, but it did to us! We have followed Michael’s career with great interest and he was kind enough to meet your daddy, Simon, backstage at the National Theatre when he was but a slip of a teenager.
European Commission 🇪🇺 (@EU_Commission) May 20, 2018
Full merrily the humble-bee doth sing,
Till he hath lost his honey and his sting;
And being once subdued in armed tail,
Sweet honey and sweet notes together fail.
– Troilus and Cressida
In her first credited role, Emily Blunt got to act opposite Michael Kitchen and wear a nifty beekeeper’s outfit. Amazing that the real experts in beekeeping require little in the way of protective wear, even when dealing with a swarm of 40,000 bees.Continue reading
May the royal newlyweds enjoy a marriage as long and happy as William and Philippa’s.Continue reading
At the alarming rate that far-right judges are being appointed to lower-court benches, it won’t be long before we lose a vital bastion against Trumpism.
From The New Yorker:
McConnell didn’t just protect a Supreme Court seat for the next President; he basically shut down the entire confirmation process for all of Obama’s federal-judgeship nominees for more than a year. It’s the vacancies that accumulated during this time — more than a hundred of them — that Trump’s team is now working efficiently to fill.
Fuming after reading about the latest developments. The two parties are not the same!Continue reading
Why didn’t any of my teachers look (and talk) like Michael Kitchen in The Browning Version?
It’s a lovely thought, but I’m sure I’d have been so mesmerised by all that charm that I wouldn’t have learned a thing. Wouldn’t have minded being Teacher’s pet, though. – anonymous
…the devil hath power. To assume a pleasing shape. – Hamlet
A devil incarnate, in the form of an angel. Those eyes! And bless that hair. Let’s face it we all had rubbish hair in the 70’s (well if you had been born then of course). It was a pre-requisite of the times. – steviecat123
Once a place of opportunity where men like Sir Helmsley’s son, Guy, could fulfill their dreams, Cape Town today faces a future threatened by looming water shortages. Dreams have been turning into nightmares for residents, Rosa Lyster writes in her recent New Yorker essay, “Coming to Terms with a Life without Water“, and she goes on to lament that words like “agualation” have entered our vocabulary as the effects of climate change become increasingly evident.
My troublous dreams this night doth make me sad.
– King Lear
A shocking scene in its day, but how much more revolting to see a real-life lecher “leading a prayer” in the Oval Office today.Continue reading
When Raymond Carter grows testy, Foyle tactfully cuts short his lunch with the communist agitator.Continue reading
Foyle’s directions to Sam for protecting herself against a bomb blast are considerably more useful than the tips disseminated by the U.S. government ten years later:Continue reading
Enjoyed this beautiful Earth Day weekend by climbing to my nearest edge of the world overlooking the Shenandoah Valley.
The uncertain glory of an April day. – The Two Gentlemen of Verona
(Location: St. James Garden/Cemetery, Liverpool, UK, April 2014)
Really couldn’t have asked for a better final scene between Foyle and Sam. Almost as good as their first scene together.
…an ending that is genuinely tender and touching and moving – in a thoroughly buttoned-up, British, 1940s kind of way, of course. “I’d really like it if you’d be the godfather,” Sam tells Foyle (she’s PWP, pregnant without permission). “Honoured.” “Thank you.” “Pleasure.” And a kiss, the first and last. – The Guardian