Tuesday, September 9, 2008


Iris Murdoch was l'enfant terrible of the literary world in early 1950s Britain -- a live wire who thumbed her nose at the conformity of the era via a voracious sex life that included male and female partners. In this snippet of her life, Murdoch (Judi Dench) faces the onset of Alzheimer's disease alongside her adoring husband (Jim Broadbent). Kate Winslet portrays the young, free-spirited Iris in flashbacks.

2001 90 minutes

Milne Library Williamstown

Based on the book:
Elegy for Iris by John Bayley
Published by Macmillan, 2000 (275 pages)
ISBN 0312253826, 9780312253820
John Bayley, who was married to Iris Murdoch for over 40 years, has written one of the most extraordinary memoirs of recent years. With great compassion he recreates their passionate love affair and poignantly describes the mask that ineluctably descended over Iris' being with the progression of her Alzheimer's disease. It was Bayley's accomplishment to find the glimmers of Iris' old self that broke through the barriers of her disease, and to share with us his message of hope and joy.

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