Where Read is uniquely good and perceptive is in his treatment of Guinness's cruel tongue, his bullying — there is no other word for it — of his wife and son, his castigation of himself for his sins and inadequacies, his battle against existential bleakness, and his Catholicism. The last is of immense importance in the actor's life. Read (correctly, I'm sure) notes that Guinness's embrace of Catholicism in its English version had a snobbish element. ("After a few months in the arch-diocese of Archbishop Spellman," he wrote from New York, "I have a lot of sympathy with anti-Catholicism.") But his faith was primarily his hedge against despair. To quote what, according to Read, was his favorite passage from G. K. Chesterton, "The Church is the one thing that prevents a man from the degrading servitude of being a child of his own time." Surely it is that contrariness that lay at the heart of Guinness's genius.LINK
"The Trinity of the Holy Family"
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