In changing the ending...the human cores of those characters are violated, and their symbolic logic fails.
Of course, yes. Tony asked about the boarding house scene, so I took it for granted we were all talking about the un-mutilated version. I hope no one mistook that I was calling the existing AMBERSONS an exemplary tragedy.
About Ionesco, vis-a-vis Welles and fascism... It's open to question, but Welles told Bogdanovich he didn't like "Rhinoceros" or its playwright. While implying also that money was a factor, he explained: "I agreed to do it because I thought the gimmick was good enough so that you could invent an evening at the theatre about it. And it worked--it always seems to work everywhere no matter how it's done." Welles could have been affecting this attitude, of course, but it seems an obvious time to have mentioned any great affinity for the theme in a contemporary sense. If, along with being London-ized, the play was somehow made to feel up-to-the-minute as Welles was inclined to do, that seems like a simple enough theatrical decision. Is there evidence that any special fire got into Welles in putting this play on, beyond that of simply putting the play over, as they used to say? (Beyond a good night at the theatre, that is.)
I wonder about this too with the domestic plays. Glenn can't help remarking with derision (a feeling which, in the abstract, all of us have shared) about "Pomona audiences" and their "cruel, typically American" regard for Aunt Fanny. Given this--I'll be gentler than Glenn--parochialism of American audiences, what else would a skilled dramatist do but localize and make immediate a given drama? This is a man who quipped of doing the Life of Jesus with hippies as the apostles, after all, and had Don Quixote shred a movie screen.
And again I'd have to ask rhetorically, concerning politics, is this clairvoyance or moral vigilance?