Anne's Reviews > All's Well That Ends Well

All's Well That Ends Well by William Shakespeare
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May 09, 2007

really liked it
Recommended for: people who like jokes about virginity

Can I mention that I have misgivings about this star-based rating system...even that I kinda hate it? I'm giving All's Well four stars, but I feel *much* less enthusiastic about it than I did about Hamlet, a five-star play presented in a frustrating four-star format. So should I add a fifth star to that play, to make clear the distinction? Should I give this one only three? But I *loved,* not *liked* it. Goodreads, please send me ten stars to play with, or half stars to half fill, or something. But back to All's Well, which I have some issues with but ultimately enjoyed re-reading. I especially love when the soldiers speak that hilarious made-up language to trick Parolles into betraying Bertram. Parolles is by far my favorite character, and not just for his wonderful, witty wordplay; it's wonderful to see a "villain" who knows himself and fears his own pomposity, who doesn't actually cause any ill to befall anyone -- who actually serves quite the opposite purpose. And there's this one lovely line by Lavatch (the fool) that lingers: "I am for the house with the narrow gate, which I take to be too little for pomp to enter. Some that humble themselves may, but they'll be for the flowery way that leads to the broad gate and the great fire." All this praise bestowed, I remain a bit perplexed by Bertram, a tad embarrassed by Helena, and *very* confused by the last scene...who knows what? I think I need to see it performed.
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