michael kitchen foyle's war broken souls smile

June 7, 2014: I miss the lighter side of Foyle.

December 3, 2017: I miss the lighter side of being an American citizen.

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michael kitchen foyle's war the funk hole mouth shrug

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.

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More John Farrow in 2017?

Hopefully, more adorable outtakes, too.

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“Are you talking to me?” Almost as funny as “Eugene. Tunnel…”. 😀

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michael kitchen white heat easy on the eyes

Casually easy on the eyes.

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michael kitchen foyle's war fifty ships what do you know
michael kitchen foyle's war fifty ships that you're not telling me

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fall

Foyle and the colors of fall.

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michael kitchen foyle's war the german woman fall colors 1

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Goodbye, Mr. Foyle.


KT said:

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. →

Mary McNamara of the LA Times makes “a case for an Emmy (or more) for Foyle’s War:

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.

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Michael Kitchen is all sun-kissed gorgeousness and gentlemanly charm as Berkeley Cole in Out of Africa.

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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.”

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mesmerizing michael kitchen love at first sight

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.

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michael kitchen richard crane reckless

Beautiful Michael Kitchen/Richard Crane.

anonymous said:

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.

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michael kitchen foyle's war a lesson in murder closeup

Another one of the gorgeous closeup shots of Michael Kitchen from A Lesson in Murder. ****

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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.

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Christopher Foyle/Michael Kitchen smiles, and the room lights up…

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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)

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Decency: 49.9%    Evil: 48.4%     Trump and GOP humiliation: 100%


Thank heaven for … Alabama?

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It’s a sad day when fan fiction is created not around dramatic shots like this, but around projections for an egregious tax bill.

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During his appearance before the congressional committee yesterday, I’m sure Trump Jr. spoke as truthfully about his family’s dealings with Russia as Marion Greenwood did about her relationship with William Messinger.

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‘Tis the season…

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Robert Mueller III is our real-life Foyle right now, a tenacious and tight-lipped investigator. “Mueller has moved so swiftly that it has left Trump’s team grasping for answers about how far the probe might ultimately reach.” (The Washington Post, Dec. 1, 2017)

michael kitchen foyle's war broken souls no one is above suspicion

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I wish we could say the same for the POTUS. Thousands of “psychiatrists warn about Trump’s mental state“.

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Some iambic pentameter from Michael Kitchen’s Foyle as a temporary distraction from the GOP’s latest reprehensible moves that promise to further unravel the fabric of our society, as if “The Self-Destruction of American Democracy” these past ten months under Trump and his administration weren’t enough.

michael kitchen's foyle using iambic pentameter

As so often, the greatest fun was discovering what Michael Kitchen might do with Foyle’s next line. Refusing to disappoint, he found the iambic pentameter in ‘Vlessing being the only person implicated in the so-called eternity ring.’ What a trooper! – Andrew Billen, The Times, March 25, 2013

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Newly posted on YouTube, BBC Radio’s 1979 production of Love’s Labour’s Lost with Michael Kitchen in the role of King Ferdinand.

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A Facebook post from a fan of Foyle’s War that strikes many chords:


michael kitchen foyle's war the german woman murder is murder

You stop believing that, and we might as well not be fighting the war… because you end up like the Nazis.  – DCS Foyle

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michael kitchen foyle's war enemy fire closeup

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Well, this just made my day. Many thanks, lucky owner of Foyle’s residence!

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Grieving for the EPA and the planet. ****

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Keith Barron also appeared with Michael Kitchen in Home Run, which along with Benefactors, makes me wish I had a time machine to transport me to England circa 1989.

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Newly listed on eBay, a press photo of Michael Kitchen as Michael Faraday in Faraday’s Dream.

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(Why was MK’s mirror image used on the DVD cover?)



Gorgeous Alibi production stills on Acorn Media’s pre-order page for the DVD.

The DVD runtime is 2.5 hours, so it seems Acorn’s release is the uncut version! It’s also in widescreen and hopefully remastered with better picture quality. Preview here.

From the New York Times, Nov. 13, 2017:

The infallible drama fodder of betrayal, love and murder gives this mini-series its edge.

If only a new Michael Kitchen project were being featured in the current NYTimes rather than a film that’s 14 years old. Sigh.

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Palate cleansing with a bit of Foyle after another news cycle filled with the latest revelations of gross sexual misconduct by men abusing their power. ****

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A man who excels at his job yet seems happy to walk away, much to the dismay of many.

Christopher Foyle and Michael Kitchen both.

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My thoughts today as I cast my vote in a blue county amidst a sea of red. The destruction of all that’s good in this country by ignorant, corrupt white men needs to be stopped.

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Newly listed on eBay, a press photo of Michael Kitchen as Dick Foster, who joins a biker gang in Hell’s Angel (1971), one of the episodes in the first series of BBC’s Play for Today.

Excerpted from a review by Leonard Buckley for the Times, Jan. 22, 1971:

So if your adopted son takes to a motor cycle as Dick did, and becomes a Hell’s Angel you will think him a cuckoo in the nest. Though with his anti-glare glasses and his rearing handlebars he looks more like a praying mantis. And if you are the rich widow, Cynthia, doting on your real son, Conrad, you will find him an absolute menace.

But these are arbitrary attitudes. You, your politician friend, Sir Geoffrey, and the others of your generation are all intent on your own selfish conventions. Dick needs love. You are lonely. Conrad is delinquent. But nobody really communicates. And when the Hell’s Angel and his companions beat up your stately home during the dinner party from which you have excluded him, you tell your guests that it is the gardener’s son.

This was an engrossing bitch of a play in which Mr. Agnew exposed the generation gap, the social divisions of our times and much that was disquieting besides. Katharine Blake as Cynthia, Richard Morant as Conrad, Michael Kitchen as Dick and André Morell as Sir Geoffrey sustained the unlikeable characters they were given to complete conviction and Angharad Rees as the one honest girl among the hypocrites provided the right sounding-board for our conscience.

The same generation gap and social divisions that can be seen in Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s Vietnam.

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