The Lion in Winter

Forget the Tudors, Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine were the real love-hate story

Showtime program The Tudors ended its sexy run earlier this year, but Houston Anglophiles need not fret. Domy Books has just the fix you need. The funky Montrose-area bookstore is showing The Lion in Winter, a 1968 Academy Award-winning film about England's lusty King Henry II and his politically smart, wickedly angry wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine. The Oscar-winning film shows just how low the ruling class can go. Henry is played by Peter O'Toole, while the always-plotting Eleanor is played by Katharine Hepburn (she won her third Oscar for this role). The two constantly vie for power, both political and sexual, the sparks between all the brighter because power struggles aside, they are still deeply in love with each other.

Deemed too much of a threat, Eleanor gets locked away in a tower for a year, while Henry has been openly living with his mistress. When she's invited to court for the holidays, Eleanor seizes the opportunity to promote one son to the throne, but Henry has chosen another. As if to settle the point, Henry throws Eleanor and his sons in a dungeon, though his mistress makes a strong case for having them killed. It's while they're in that dungeon that one of the film's most famous exchanges is spoken: Prince John: "A knife! He's got a knife!" Eleanor: "Of course he has a knife, he always has a knife, we all have knives! It's 1183 and we're barbarians!" 8:30 p.m. at Domy Books, 1709 Westheimer. For information, call 713-523-3669 or visit www.domystore.com. Free.
Wed., Sept. 1, 8:30 p.m., 2010

 
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