Mr. Steven’s the butler in “Remains of the Day”
As it is the case with these things, indeed, any thing which one might think on and analyze, and, in doing so, create a montage, an eclectic collage, if you will, of themes and and motifs, I’m not sure a cohesive whole, a singular zeitgeist could, indeed, should, be taken from it.
But try I shall. The aesthetic is not unlike a Renoir, with a fury of motion that a Barcelona bullfighter can only suggest. It’s stark, certainly, but the entire visual sense is not without its charm. Perhaps, in some ways, a little pedestrian, or even simple, it can still be appreciated, dare I say, viscerally.
A true Englishman appreciates courage above all else. Richard the Lionheart, Nelson, Churchill. And now, Shank, who,while being indeterminate origin and, likely, not even English is still a fearsome, brave hero.
Courageous, above all else. While others attack him in large, unseemly packs, he engages them with little thought to his own safety, only seeking that most gentlemanly of pursuits, satisfaction. Were a duel available, were seconds to be named and a place to be paced out I have little doubt that he would engage on that most hallowed ground. But, forced to play the fool, to go through many waves of demonstrably lesser men, he does not hesitate, he does not shirk.
And what fine display it is, to be sure. He does not limit himself to pistol, for, as his opponent chooses to hide himself behind cowardice and retreat, so to this Shank, should be allowed some liberties. Chainsaws, shotguns, machetes, these are not untoward or excessive liberties, I believe.
There are many other people in his way. Some almost the equal to the man he is seeking, all giving a thrilling encounter and bringing a not inconsiderable flush to this butler’s face.
A delightful, charming game.
Eight years of repressed desire out of a possible Ten.