John Patrick Shanley on ‘The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond’

by Tennessee Williams

When I saw a new film with a screenplay authored by none other than Tennessee Williams, I was seized by a feeling of joy. For this giant of stage and screen to resurrect in the year 2009 seemed nothing less than a victory over death. And so it is. For “The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond” is not a fragment, a poor shadow; it is a legitimate addition to the Williams pantheon. Wealthy aunts, pretentious debutantes, personal ruin, mental illness, the cruelties of society, they’re all here, and towering over it all, Williams’ compassion and poetry. He writes again of his lost world, and we experience the lost world of Williams himself once more. It’s a kind of miracle.

John Patrick Shanley won the Pulitzer Prize for his play “Doubt.”

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