Perfect Match

         After reading George Bernard Shaw s 1913 play Pygmalion, I was convinced that Higgins and Eliza were in love. I was shocked when I found out that Pygmalion was not intended to be a love story. After watching the 1938 film Pygmalion, directed by Anthony Asquith and Leslie Howard, I was even more convinced that Eliza and Higgins should be together.

         When reading Pygmalion, I thought that Eliza and Higgins were in love with each other and they both were too proud to admit their true feelings. I found Pygmalion to be the perfect Cinderella story. Eliza Doolittle was take in off the streets and turned into a princess by Higgins. The ending of the play was the only part that did not fit into the Cinderella version. Eliza did not live happily ever after with Higgins (prince charming); instead she left her handsome prince for a toad (Freddy). I was completely shocked when Higgins said that Eliza was going to marry Freddy. I forced myself to believe that Higgins was just going to make Eliza suffer a little and let her realize what a goof Freddy really was. I figured within two days Higgins would be begging Eliza to come back to him, because he would not be able to function without her.

         The 1938 screenplay Pygmalion also convinced me that Eliza and Higgins belonged together. Leslie Howard and Wendy Hiller were perfect for their roles of Higgins and Eliza. I felt as though these two actors had a great chemistry, and I could see Eliza falling for Higgins because he was young and attractive. I was also happy with the ending when Eliza returned to Higgins. I just wish they would have shown a little more affection toward each other.

         Overall I really enjoyed the play Pygmalion. I think Shaw accidentally did a great job putting two people together who had too much pride to admit they actually cared about each other. I found the screenplay to be one of the few I enjoyed viewing much better than reading the written play. I feel as though this play needs to be spoken out loud to be fully understood. The play is based on the use of different language and accents; and, if the reader is unfamiliar with the way the accents are suppose to sound, it is hard to understand the play just by reading it.

Kimberly A. Hunt

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