Ralph Fiennes: ‘Liberal values: it doesn’t mean you don’t have a core’


When the Golden Globe and SAG nominations came out, there were few surprises. The acting categories have been firming up for two months now, and there’s little chance that we will get some huge, out-of-nowhere nomination for someone like Ralph Fiennes. Which is too bad, because apparently his supporting performance in A Bigger Splash is completely Oscar-worthy. Many critics included the film and Ralph’s performance in particular on their “best of the year” lists. Alas, I don’t think Ralph really cares enough to campaign, nor does anyone want to spend the money for a campaign.

That’s basically why I’m writing about Ralph right now, even though this Evening Standard interview is about a month old. I totally missed it when it came out (sad) but Ralph did the interview to chat about A Bigger Splash, and he ended up saying many interesting things about politics and love. Some highlights:

His politics: In the past, he has expressed left-leaning politics, but lost faith in Blair over Iraq. Of Jeremy Corbyn, he says: ‘I’m curious, but I can’t say I’m a fan. I think he’s a decent man with a socialist conscience, but I’m sceptical that he’d be able to lead the Labour Party. I know him to be a good constituency MP, but what we need is a strong coherent opposition. I feel that very strongly. There’s divisiveness in the Labour Party that is not helpful. God knows we need a strong opposition now to push this Tory government and push it hard.’

On Donald Trump: He describes it as ‘distressing’ that the liberal values he was brought up with are now treated ‘in America with contempt’. ‘Liberal values: it doesn’t mean you don’t have a core. It means you are open to inclusivity and tolerance. We have to be prepared to defend those things and when we’re called on those values by the likes of Trump, we need to stand up for them.’ He sees shades of Shakespeare in Trump. ‘He’s a weird mix of King Lear in the first act — that attitude of “This is what I’m going to do and f**k you if you disagree” — with the sort of sensuous egregiousness of Falstaff. I’d put him somewhere in the mix between the two.’

He hasn’t spent Christmas with his family in three years: For Christmas, he ‘usually — often’ goes to New York, where he has an apartment. Three years ago was his last family Christmas. ‘Mostly because my brother Joseph [also an actor] generously invited us all. It was great.’ Has he not been invited back since? He laughs. ‘There’s not been an invitation forthcoming since, no.’ They didn’t have turkey, he assures me, ‘but a less conventional ham’.

His perfect woman: ‘This sounds a bit clunky but I’m always attracted to… I like being with women who are quite strong and seem to come from a sense of knowing themselves, that sit in who they are with confidence, and can be quite confrontational — even aggressive. I’ve always found that very attractive. It’s confidence. Their sense of their purpose.’

An unconventional life: ‘I do not want a picture-postcard family life, no. Definitely not.’

He doesn’t want to be in a relationship & he’s not lonely: ‘I think loneliness is quite good for people. To confront who you are; time for thinking and confronting and accepting. I don’t feel I’m lonely. I like being alone.’

[From the Evening Standard]

I hate it when anyone tries to make Donald Trump sound like a Shakespearean-level character. He is not. Pres. Obama has Shakespearean depth. Bill Clinton has Shakespearean depth. Dick Cheney has Shakespearean depth. Donald Trump is like a villain from a Brothers Grimm fairy tale – someone evil, vile, base and deep as a puddle. As for what Fiennes says about what he wants in a woman… someone confidant, confrontational, aggressive, purposeful… God, I want him. I want to argue with him. I want to eat Christmas ham with him.


Photos courtesy of WENN.

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47 Responses to “Ralph Fiennes: ‘Liberal values: it doesn’t mean you don’t have a core’”

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  1. QueenB says:

    “I like being with women who are quite strong” all famous men say that.

    • Zapp Brannigan says:

      Right, it’s not like they can say “Well I would quiet like a doormat who inflates my ego and doesn’t question my cheating on her” and don’t forget the old classic “a good sense of humour”

      Having stated all this, well I still would.

      • lena says:

        Well no, but they also didnt ask him specifically about strong vs weak women, just what his perfect woman would look like. He could have said a dozen other things, like he likes women who are adventurous and fun or he likes educated and intelligent women or he likes down to earth women or…..

    • GreenieWeenie says:

      Still, I take heart. He lives alone, he doesn’t pursue a picture perfect family life and he appreciates a woman’s confidence (at least he says he does).

      Nice to know there are kindred spirits about. Sometimes I wonder wth I’ve done with the past ten years–should I have spent them Instagramming my picture perfect pregnancies, childbirths, milestones, holidays and vacations? (Spoiler: I didnt). At least somebody exists who recognizes value in the choice not to…

    • ichsi says:

      True, but compared to a lot of other male stars he actually dates them. He’s been with Patti Smith after all.

  2. Lucy says:

    He had the chance to compare Trump with He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, he did NOT take it. Sigh. Still love him, though.

    • lightpurple says:

      He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named had an intelligence that Trump lacks as well as the ability to plot and wait. HWMNBN would never take to Twitter to spew insults and inanities in the middle of the night just because someone annoyed him. Instead, he would send a lackey to dispatch the target promptly and quietly yet in a gruesome manner.

      • Megan says:

        Trump is more like a Dementor. Mindless, soul sucking evil.

      • robyn says:

        He has an interesting take on women and life … if what he says is to be believed. He doesn’t seem to want to fall into conventional “traps”. I like his take on loneliness, as so many of us keep busy to keep away from our thoughts and secret world where we truly live. It is also true about “liberalism”. It has gotten such bad name thanks to merging entertainment and media and the Conservative twists about science and caring about the lost and disenfranchised. But if the merging didn’t exist I wouldn’t be here commenting and have more confidence in a comedian getting the news facts right vs the regular news and political propaganda.

        Megan, I agree with “soul sucking” for Trump. The entire election felt like my soul was being sucked into a vacuum. I am hoping this New Year begins with corrupt Trump being expelled to Russia for treason. They can have him with my blessings.

      • LoveIsBlynde says:

        Trump doesn’t tweet because he’s “frustrated” or “ooc” . Trump was advised to twee For the express purpose of sidestepping the actual news. The liberal media is full of lies and the American intelligence agencies have and always will “get it wrong”. Every tweet from the tiny hands must be met with “you are not the news donny boy- facts matter. America deserves a fact filter called the media”.

    • SusanneToo says:

      I’m not firing on all cylinders yet. Who is HWMNBN?

      • LAK says:

        Voldermort – villian from the Harry Potter series.

        He starts out being referred to as HWMNBN out of fear.

        Later, it turned out that he had charmed his name such that if you said it out loud, it instantly drew his followers – death eaters – to you and they were more interested in torture than talking, so everyone went around calling him HWMNBN.

      • SusanneToo says:

        Aah, thank you. To add, I love Ralph, but wasn’t crazy about A Bigger Splash.

    • ls_boston says:

      King Lear is a madman. I don’t know Voldemort but KL is no prize. Had Shakespeare still been around, i have no doubt that he would have write a play about the Mad Fuehrer Trump just as he mocked other vaunted but grandiose figures.

      • LoveIsBlynde says:

        Trump is too puppet-Ish and classless for a comparison to any king. I don’t get the orange thing as commanding, but maudlin and smarmy.

  3. Strangegirl says:

    Oh my number one fantasy man!!!! I’ve given up on the academy ever acknowledging him. Heaven forbid you give an award to someone who actually deserves it! Still the greatest actor ever!!!!!

  4. Jayna says:

    He had that longtime girlfriend/partner who was four years older than him. I thought they were still together. I guess not. Before that he was with someone 17 years older than him for years.

    • lallyvee says:

      He was with Francesca Annis who is 16 years his senior from 1994 to 2006.

    • Kori says:

      He was also with Alex Kingston for a decade before they married. That lasted two years until he had an affair with Annis.

      • VirgiliaCoriolanus says:

        My impression is that he married her because his mother was dying (she died soon after they were married)……which was dumb.

        But I don’t think he can keep it in his pants period because he cheated on Annis with someone else. Plus who can forget the stewardess that he had unprotected sex with on his way to give a speech about AIDS.

        He is skeevy skeevy skeevy, but I looove him!

    • lightpurple says:

      He was with Alex Kingston, who is either the same age he is or a year younger, for over a decade, married her, then dumped her for Francesca Annis who is 16 years older than he is. They were together for more than a decade but split about 10 years ago.

    • Norman Bates' Mother says:

      I think you mean Amanda Harlech, who is 3 years older than him. She is a pretty influential person in a fashion world. They never made their relationship official, but they were regularly photographed together from 2007 until pretty recently. Maybe they are still together, it’s hard to tell (he denies dating anyone ever).

      The timeline of his relationships is interesting (apart from the overlapping). He spent almost a quarter century with women who fit his description of a perfect woman and are both strong and confident – 13 years with Kingston and 11 with Annis. Then he cheated on Annis with some lingerie model, had a fling with that airheaded real housewife of wherever and had sex with a flight attendant, only to start another long-term relationship with a strong and confident older woman – Harlech. He must have had some sort of mid-life crisis in 2006.

  5. Esmom says:

    I don’t know why but I’m fixating about his Christmas comment. Why hasn’t his brother invited him again? Seems odd to me.

    • OTHER RENEE says:

      I got stuck on that comment as well. Sad. If you have family you get along with, why shouldn’t you spend holidays with them?

  6. Lindy says:

    I know he has a tendency toward the slightly sketchy, but my god, he is one of my favorites! He brings his intelligence and humor to all the characters he plays.

  7. Greenieweenie says:

    Pretty sure Dick Cheney was filled with piss and vinegar, as befitting a soulless human shell.

  8. Bettyrose says:

    I read those comments in his accent. Siiiiiigh.

  9. angie0717 says:

    “Oh God I want him”… best line Kaiser!!! I really did LOL ☺

  10. ell says:

    i hate hate hate men who say they’re attracted to strong women. UGH.

    • GreenieWeenie says:

      why? Because they don’t clarify what a strong woman is? Or because it’s something of a stereotype (“the strong woman”) Or because it’s demeaning of other women? Just curious.

      • Otaku Fairy says:

        Some have said they don’t like it when men say that because it feels like pandering to them- like guys are saying what they know will get them women’s approval or trying to be the male version of the ‘Cool Girl’. It doesn’t bother me though.

    • Bettyrose says:

      ELL- ITA, I find it patroning when men say things like that- but I swooned over his political statements, anyway. He’s got the sexiest voice, and I agree with his political sentiments.

  11. iseepinkelefants says:

    And I love a man who not only loves a woman like that but accepts to understand a woman like that. I live in Paris now and not only do Frenchmen seem to dislike women like that, they seem to hold contempt for them. It’s so off putting. I miss men who love, admire, and respect strong women ☹️

    • Rico Shew says:

      Strong is a very general term. I’ve known women who could be described as being strong because they were controlling, loud and opinionated. Traits I don’t find attractive in anybody regardless of their gender.

  12. MAC says:

    I would love to have dinner with him. I find the movie stars who do not have all of the life on social media and do not call the Paps for photos the interesting ones. I am ok when the social media is used for charity stuff but other than that I think it becomes a saturation. My husband is from Great Britain and I am thankful we met. Men in Italy I met where like a lot of European men I have met old school but controlling. But there are always gems out there.

    I am going to investigate his new movie, Thanks for covering him and people like him who do not get 200 comments.

  13. Etienne says:

    Ralph Fiennes is the Aaron Taylor-Johnson of the previous generation.

  14. Puff says:

    A relative of mine has actually worked with him. He’s pretty much your regular a-hole and has “flings” all over the place.

  15. Alldamnday says:

    I used to work in a Hollywood agency as an assistant. He came in one day, spent a moment chatting at my desk, and I swear I thought I might need a pregnancy test. He is soooo sexy.

  16. bogos says:

    I wonder if he does his own cooking and housekeeping. Because it seems to me guys who like being alone have regular habits and do their own domestic stuff.

    *Also, I want to add that he sometimes looks like Jon Hamm.*

  17. Hannah says:

    Lol to the brothers Grimm comparison. You always make me smile