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Thursday, January 17, 2008

Rattle Of A Simple Man

If you're going to try the BBC iPlayer - and you should - try it on "The Secret Life Of Norman Wisdom Aged 92 3/4". This is the story of how his two middle-aged children deal with the fact that his carer is retiring and their dad can no longer look after himself at his home on the Isle Of Man. Not long ago I blogged about a film portrait of the last year in the life of George Melly, in which his relatives confessed that he'd always taken up more than his share of the family's oxygen. This was similar. Wisdom appears to have no inner life to refer to as he drifts in and out of dementia. The only thing he clings to is that he's famous. There's a heartbreaking scene near the end where he buttonholes one of his grandson's young schoolfriends and says "do you know who I am?"
The boy says "Greg's grandad."
"No," he say. "I'm Norman."