Thursday, September 15, 2011


I'll admit it. I'm one of those people who doesn't "get" Shakespeare. Look, I read Romeo and Juliet back in high school but even with SparkNotes, I still couldn't fully grasp it. In short, I rather watch the movie than read the play.

Believe me, I tried to read Hamlet but I couldn't get through the first act. I opted instead to see Laurence Olivier's take on Shakespeare's famous play. Safe to say I got through the movie easier than the play. That's because Olivier's direction makes the story flow with great ease.

Of the many excellent performances, my favorites came from Olivier as the tormented Hamlet, and Jean Simmons as the doomed Ophelia. A scene I liked between both of them has, minus Simmons' narration, no dialogue. It relies mostly on Olivier's mannerisms rather than his words. And I must say, it's quite a romantic scene.

Hamlet is fantastic. Personally, I think it would make Shakespeare proud knowing that his work was in such care. And it's safe to say that this rightfully earned its Best Picture Oscar (and Olivier's win for Best Actor).

My Rating: *****


  1. I'd like to try reading something from Shakespeare one time, but I'm afraid I won't like it either.

  2. I love this version of Hamlet. Glad you enjoyed it as well. Have you seen the Hamlet with Ethan Hawke (2000)? It's interesting, to say the least.

  3. I'm never satisfied at any of the major film adaptations just because they bomb the 'To Be' soliloquy (never got to Hawke's interpretation).

    Also, I played Hamlet in high school. I sucked.


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