Mary Beth Hurt: So Dangerous A Talent

Notes Made By Tenn
On Index Cards/Legal Pad
Found Royal Orleans Hotel
New Orleans

"Mary Beth Hurt. An ideal name for so dangerous a talent--a talent that can seduce and charm and damage; a talent that can expose and wound; a talent that is, as one critic wrote, nefarious.

"Funny and wild and suffused with helium and gin in Secret Service/Aunt Pittypat with a firmer carapace and good vision. 

"Frightening and sweet and wild as F. Jasmine Addams, and so like the woman across from whom I wrote and drank and ate and dreamed. Stalking a barren landscape of her own invention, hungry for what she couldn't find because she couldn't imagine or accept it. Chilling.

"Tense and coiled in Interiors. Hungry again. Is she always hungry? Dissatisfied? Is her talent always seeking to consume more and more? She was always in the corners of that film, much like the awful, antiseptic accessories and emblems chosen and burnished by mother--the starched and scoured Gerry Page, an interior decorator absent her own interior landscape. Irony? I think Mr. Allen knows what he is doing. Let us all decorate, cover, overburden what is puny and shriveled. Let there be design where there is no function. I liked that film. I think that Hurt (hurt) was its non-functioning but vital heart. She was remonstrated for breathing! Irony? I think Mr. Allen knows what he is doing.

"I know that Mary Beth Hurt knows what she is doing."

Mary Beth Hurt and Laurence Luckinbill in "The Five Forty-Eight," an adaption of a John Cheever short story, seen on PBS in 1979.

"Kidnapping a man on a train. Cheever country. She held him at gunpoint, and I felt as endangered as he did. Her weapon was her talent and her intention and her focus. I want to have her walk on my stage, fill my words, coil in a corner I've yet to fully light just yet.

"What is she like? Must I conjure some words to get her to come to me? Does she only respond to words and work and commands to consume with her talent and intellect?

"Who is this woman?"


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