Les Enfants Terribles

Les Enfants Terribles is a play by Cocteau [1], not particularly very good. A movie, not bad but also far from being a masterpiece, has been adapted from it [2]. Although it was directed by Melville, Cocteau ruined it by imposing his lover of the time for the character of Paul, to the worst effect.

The theme inspired Philip Glass who wrote a wonderful opera, Children of the game, which is the reason of my interest for this work.

Children of the game

Glass wrote a stunning masterpiece that fits perfectly the piece. I don't want to write much about it now, I just want to share this excerpt of Scene 17, Are you in Love, Agathe?

that is such an inspiration for me, it shows that however poor or dull you can find something—in this case a critically acclaimed novel and the movie that typically follows in such cases—there's always a way to look at it the way Glass looks at this discussion between Paul and Lise. Here the tension tips on its maximum, and everything is on the point of collapsing onto its fate.

The whole Scene is 10min14s, it is intermittent with calm passages where the narrator describes the escalating action, as Lise is planning her deed. The above excerpt is one of the building moments, still tame. An explosive exchange occurs later (not reproduced here) when Lise persuades her brother to let his would-be lover marry a fortuitous partner, not to steal away their incestuous fusion. All together, the work is a fountain of feelings, splashing hate and love in a torrent of tortuous harmony.