Melanie and I arrived very late at our beach place last night. I had a couple of emails to send off and some meetings to write up and so Melanie fell asleep while I burned the midnight oil. The TV was on and one of my favourite old films was on. ‘The Lion in winter’
If you have not watched it I highly recommend you do. In the film Katharine Hepburn plays Eleanor of Aquitaine, Peter O’Toole is Henry II, and Anthony Hopkins plays Richard the Lion heart.
There is a scene near the end of the film which means so much to me and strikes a chord in my chivalric loving soul. The young princes have temporarily banded together, under Eleanor’s direction, in an effort to rebel against their father. Henry outwits them, and has them imprisoned in the wine cellar.
Awaiting execution they huddle in the cellar, they hear footsteps, and fear that their father is approaching to kill them. Richard refuses to be cowed. “He’s here,” he says. “He’ll get no satisfaction out of me. He isn’t going to see me beg.”
Geoffery scornfully answers him, “you chivalric fool… as if the way one fell down mattered.” then Richard replies one of my favourite lines in a film ever, “When the fall is all there is, it matters.”
When a person has only their pride and dignity left, to stand up and fall with courage is the last fall measure of devotion. When the fall’s all that’s left, it does indeed matter a great deal.