Thursday, October 18, 2007

An Actress to Remember: Deborah Kerr

Deborah Kerr worked in Hollywood in the days of elegance and discretion. Love scenes were filled with tenderness and promise, never nudity and vulgarity. If you want to see the proof, watch "An Affair to Remember" made in 1957, the movie treats romance and falling in love with the magical hand long sense gone from movie making.

Or check out "The King and I." Starring opposite Yul Brenner, Ms. Kerr portrays the heart of a woman who loved a man, through respect and understanding. Two key ingredients, so often lacking in love stories of today.

Ms. Kerr proved her versatility with the role of Karen Holmes in "From Here to Eternity." She and Burt Lancaster made sand in your bloomers look nigh on erotic. Her Broadway debut, "Tea and Sympathy" also departed from her genteel and proper persona.

Her movies continue to touch hearts and lives. The 1993 hit "Sleepless in Seattle" introduced Kerr to a new generation of movie goers.

She nearly disappeared from the silver screen by 1970, citing disillusionment with the direction of the movie making industry. Who can blame her?
Deborah Kerr said in an interview given in 1982, "Believe me, Cary and I knew how to kiss. When we did a love scene, we may not have been trying to swallow each other but, for those brief moments, we just loved each other."

She also said, "I think I understand what women see in the movie. There is a sweetness that is appealing and far removed from today's crudities. It makes them realize that the world has lost something delightful."

I think she is right.

Deborah Kerr, 1921-2007

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