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Shakespeare Movies/Adaptations

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1 hour ago, tennisgurl said:

Ran is a really good adaptation, I liked it a lot. I dont think its because its sons, exactly, I just think they give their version of Lear had more of an arc, and he was, ironically, more of a real Shakespearean tragic hero. Or, villain I guess. He is less stupid and more of a guy who rose to power through violence, and then was failed by hubris (which is always a classic) and in the end, he realized everything he did was for nothing, and he was a pretty crappy guy all along. Plus, its just a great movie, even if you dont know its connection to King Lear.

 

Agreed. You have the two reminders of his past, his daughter-in-laws, Lady Kaede and Lady Sue, both from different clans Hidetoro, the Lear figure slaughtered to build his kingdom. One is still full of anger and seeks vengeance and the other, a Buddhist forgives him. The latter of course makes makes him feel the most remorse.

 

1 hour ago, tennisgurl said:

I also love Throne of Blood, also by Kurosawa, a Japanese version of Macbeth. Its so fascinating to watch the combination of Shakespeare and Japanese folklore and traditions of dance, dress, and storytelling, and setting it in a fascinating period in its history. But its still clearly Macbeth. 

A clip of how they did that amazing final scene with the hundreds of arrows(all real).

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On 6/24/2018 at 10:36 PM, GreekGeek said:

 Ethan Hawke played Hamlet

Ethan Hawke was also in 2014's Cymbeline with Ed Harris and Milla Jovovich. It's a modern retelling, crossing Shakespeare with Sons of Anarchy. I enjoyed it quite a bit, but it might not be to everyone's taste.

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Over the weekend I watched Trevor Nunn's 1996 film of Twelfth Night for the first time in many years. I loved it just as much as I did the first time.

It's a great example of really rethinking a play for the new medium -- Nunn turned it into a movie -- and yet remaining true to it. The opening ship scenes and shipwreck (with new narration beginning "Once upon a twelfth night... or what you will...") set us up perfectly for so many themes: the twins' closeness and resemblance, their flair for cross-dressing, Antonio's crush on Sebastian. Then the aftermath on shore (with the invented element of hostilities between Messaline and Illyria, justifying the need for disguise), with Viola's name planted a couple of times in dialogue so we actually get to hear it spoken, and her lessons in becoming a man bridging our way (over the opening credits) to Orsino's delivery of the actual first line of the play; all witnessed by Ben Kingsley's inscrutable Feste. Beautiful.

Lovely performances too, by Helena Bonham Carter, Imelda Staunton, Mel Smith, Richard E. Grant, Nigel Hawthorne, Nicholas Farrell, Imogen Stubbs, Toby Stephens, all ideal for this nineteenth-century setting (in Cornwall). And finally the inspired ending that juxtaposes the joy of the two happy couples with the disappointment of nearly everyone else, leaving the castle in the rain one by one, just as the final song tells us. I'm about to introduce the movie to a Shakespeare-mad young niece who especially likes this play because her name is Olivia. I'm sure she'll love it.

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Yeah I love that version of Twelfth Night. 

I watched both the first Hollow Crown miniseries and the second about the War of the Roses. I've seen and liked standalone adaptations of Henry V and Richard III but now seeing them as finales to their retrospective quadralogies I appreciate them as payoffs of larger stories. Hal's victory in France laying to rest his late father's fears that he would be like the king whose throne he had usurped. Richard III's defeat by Henry Tudor finally ending the cycle of violence and revenge that had gone on for decades. I also like that they cut a lot out of the Talbot stuff out of Henry VI Part I and that they don't poetray Joan of Arc as an evil sorceress like the play!

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At Vulture: 'Harold Perrineau Answers Every Question We Have About Romeo + Juliet'

Quote

What was Baz like, both when you first met him and as a director?

You don’t meet a lot of artists when you go meet directors. They have an idea or a vision, and that’s it. But Baz was so interested in finding things out, searching things through. After the third or fourth audition, I realized I had to loosen up a little bit. Because it was Shakespeare, I was tense. I’d never auditioned for Shakespeare before that. All of these cats had come out of great theater schools like Yale and Juilliard were always competing for those roles, so I never got them. This one, I just had to relax and be who I was. As it turned out, for this particular Romeo + Juliet, who I was really served the character. He didn’t need to sound like he had standard American speech or a British accent or iambic pentameter. He was looking for someone who sounded like me: from Brooklyn, with a little Brooklyn edge and an accent. Turns out my faults in theater were my virtues in this audition.

What was your initial understanding of the character of Mercutio in this movie — did you know he’d wear dresses and sheer tops and headbands?

Baz didn’t explain any of that stuff. I didn’t know that until I got to Mexico and I went to a fitting. I was like, “Who’s that dress for?” [Laughs.] “Who’s wearing that skirt, me?” I didn’t know any of that. But all of us had studied Romeo and Juliet in school, and we knew these young men were very hot and lusty. We knew that was the world, that this real love affair between Romeo and Mercutio, what that meant, how to explore that. But I didn’t realize until we got there that we were going to play with all of those ideas of young men and love and gender-bending, as it were. And when I got there, that’s when he started talking to us about it, how to capture it. I didn’t know what Baz was looking for, and I don’t think anybody did. He shaped it in his head, then put us all together, and said, “This is what I’m doing!” And we were like, “Oh, okay! Oh, snap!” Me and Jamie [Kennedy] and Zak [Orth, who play Mercutio and Romeo’s friends], were like, “Oh, okay! All right! We can do that.”

 

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11 hours ago, Trini said:

But all of us had studied Romeo and Juliet in school, and we knew these young men were very hot and lusty. We knew that was the world, that this real love affair between Romeo and Mercutio, what that meant, how to explore that.

WTF?!?!  Did he read a different play than I did?

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From the article, 

Quote

 As one of those teens, I can say with confidence that Romeo + Juliet — and more specifically, the androgynously, angstily beautiful Leonardo DiCaprio making out with Claire Danes in a pool in a mesh knight costume — launched me straight into puberty over the course of two brief hours.

I think I had the exact same reaction when I watched the bedroom scene in the Zeffirelli version back when I was in middle school. Young Olivia Hussey? Yowza!

On a different note, when athletes were withholding services and shutting down leagues this summer, it was like living in real life version Lysistrata. 

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On 9/13/2020 at 4:47 AM, xaxat said:

From the article, 

I think I had the exact same reaction when I watched the bedroom scene in the Zeffirelli version back when I was in middle school. Young Olivia Hussey? Yowza!

I had the same experience middle school English!

Here's a great interview with the leads in 1968:

 

 

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On 9/13/2020 at 7:47 AM, xaxat said:

I think I had the exact same reaction when I watched the bedroom scene in the Zeffirelli version back when I was in middle school. Young Olivia Hussey? Yowza!

I know we watched this in high school English, but it didn't have much of an impact -- but I almost sure my parochial school skipped the nudity. (Can't really recall.) The Baz Luhrman film is "my" Romeo & Juliet. Anyway, play this on a loop at my funeral: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lqKZwvH2bAQ

One thing I love about the party scene is that the costume designer didn't skimp at all even with the background extras; even with those who don't get closeups or more than seconds of screentime have amazing looking masquerade costumes.

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Not an adaptation, but I really liked a movie All Is True from 2018 about Shakespeare's final years. It was a quiet movie, focusing on Shakespeare's relationship with his family and I think all of the acting, dialogues and scenery were excellent. Plus, it had Kenneth Branagh playing Shakespeare, that was enough for me to want to see it.

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On 2/9/2021 at 5:34 PM, VCRTracking said:

 

 

I saw this in the theaters when I was 14 or so and remember really hating it (except for Paul Rudd) but then I saw Zeffirelli’s version first in 7th grade and loved it so this was pretty much trash to me.  Even watching this reminded me why I disliked it so much. The soundtrack though? Was perfection. 

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