From: marianne.macdonald@lineone.net
Date: 28 Sep 2001

>able to
>>heighten tension instead of diminish it through the bland and
>> >inconsequential habits of Ripley.

I've never been quite sure about him, either. Survival is certainly Ripley's basic motive, and I find the blank-faced representation of criminal acts quite interesting. At least, something makes me read the damn thing. I certainly don't see him as more evil than somebody like Hannibal Lector, for instance, but there is something appallingly ordinary about him. Everyman as villain? Bertie Wooster as bad man?

I'll tell you - he always makes me think of that phrase about "the banality of evil".


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