Thursday, 24 June 2010
I'm not a theatre buff AT ALL and haven't watched any Shakespeare since school – although I've read a bit and do love that witty bard – so was slightly apprehensive about whether I was going to enjoy it. I generally share Paul McCartney's view on theatre. 'The only thing I get from the theatre is a sore arse.' Although that was in 1967. He's probably a complete luvvie, now.
Happily, whether it was Mendes' treatment of the play, or the actors abilities to make the verse seem so modern through their intonation and delivery, I don't know, but it was hilarious and a joy to watch. Stephen Dillane's performance as Jacques, the melancholy philosopher, was a particular treat as he rakishly channeled Bob Dylan and Elvis. And hot new Shakespearean actors on the block Christian Camargo and Juliet Rylance, who play lovers Orlando and Rosalind, are newly-weds in real life which added an interesting dynamic.
It was just a delight to hear Shakespeare's wit come alive, from his jibes at women 'Do you not know I am a woman? When I think, I must speak', through to Jacques famous and wonderfully cynical soliloquy, 'All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players: They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts...'.
Anyway, you know all about this, as you all know a lot more about theatre than me. So what I need you to tell me now is which Shakespeare productions I need to watch that are available on DVD. I don't really do period dramas so have completely missed out on this genre. I know you lot will know so please share!
[I got free tickets through See Film First, which I highly recommend signing up to for last minute cinema, music and theatre freebies.]
Photo: Sara Krulwich/The New York Times