n°147/ Shouting Liz

November 2014

by Nathalie Azoulai

If she did start as a good quiet girl, her persona quickly shifted to some out loud unhappy temper, both indignant, abused and vindictive. From the delicate young girl in Lassie ou A Place in the Sun (1951) up to the late Mike Nichols’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf ?, Elizabeth Taylor bought herself a tone of voice. Some melodramatic register other brunette actresses would play too- such as Natalie Wood or many years later French Isabelle Adjani. But Taylor had something sexual and special. Some wild frustrated longing for men who wouldn’t want her such as Newman in Cat on Hot Tin Roof or Brando in Reflections in a Golden Eye. Some longing she might have truly felt towards the love of her life Montgomery Cliff or her husband Burton whom she kept shouting at for ever…

 Elizabeth Taylor