REFLECTIONS ON "JACKIE": PART XVII
Knoxville, Tennessee (JFK+50) JFK+50 begins the year 2017 with a review of "Jackie" starring Natalie Portman. "Jackie" is a Fox Searchlight Pictures film directed by Pablo Larrain.
The screenplay was written by Noah Oppenheim. Released on December 2, 2016, the movie has an "R" rating and lasts 1 hour and 40 minutes.
We are nearing the movie's end back in the Living Room at the Kennedy Compound where the Journalist and Jackie are winding down their conversation.
"There's one last thing--more important than all the rest. Every night before bed, we had this old Victrola*. We'd listen to a couple of records and his favorite was Camelot...**
that last side (of the long-play record)...is all that keeps running through my mind...
Don't let it be forgot, that for one brief shining moment there was a Camelot.
Jack loved history. Its what made him what he was. Imagine...this little boy with scarlet fever in bed, reading history. King Arthur and the Knights of the Roundtable. That's what Camelot is about. Ordinary men banding together to fight for a better world.
Jack...had ideals...he could rally others to believe in."
The Journalist asks...
"And will those ideals live on?"
"I'm sure they will--there will be other great Presidents---but there won't be another Camelot."
Time Magazine's Hugh Sidey, who covered the Kennedy White House, wrote in 1964...
"Let the skeptics snort about Camelot, but there was something during the Kennedy years that was magic...no small part of (that)...lives on today (because of Jackie Kennedy's) standards of public propriety and majesty."
*Victrola is a brand of phonograph which was first manufactured by The Victor Talking Machine Company and later by RCA. Anne Garside writes in "Camelot at Dawn" that the Victrola Jackie referred to in her interview with Teddy White appears to be the one she and Jack had at their Dent Place residence in Georgetown. (see photo below)
**Camelot is the legendary center of King Arthur's realm first mentioned in Chretien de Troye's 'Lancelot,' a dream city...where KA dispenses justice, hosts feasts and is surrounded by brave knights.
The soundtrack the Kenndys listened to was from the musical which premiered on Broadway in 1960. The music was by Frederick Loewe & record album was the top-selling LP for 60 consecutive weeks.
"Camelot at Dawn: Jacqueline and John Kennedy in Georgetown, May 1954," by Anne Garside, photographs by Orlando Suero, The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 2001
"Camelot, King Arthur's Court," www.legendofkingarthur.co.uk
"Jackie-Screenplay," by Script Pipeline, www.scriptpipeline.com/
"The Last Side of Camelot," Kennedy Assassination Chronicles, 1995, www.jfklancer.com/
"The 'Very Basics' of Antique Phonographs," The Victor-Victrola Page, www.victor-victrola.com/