Friday, 10 July 2009

Macbeth (2006)

Technically this isn’t a review for reasons i will explain later.

Take a centuries old classic play by the unopposed king of all Playrights Billy Shakespeare Himself, set it in current times but keep the dialogue the same, do it all with an Australian accent. Congratulations you have made Macbeth (2006).

Does it work? Does it fuck! Macbeth is stomach churningly awful. The very dialogue of Macbeth leads to overacting, that is expected. If you set it contemporaneously then you have the problem that rather then a historical figure acting over the top which is easily accepted you instead have normal people doing it. You also inherit a huge problem of trying to get your script to make sense in a modern setting. Easy to solve, you hack out huge parts of it to the point where you virtually have a music soundtrack punctuated with random quotes. Macbeth is a dogs dinner, a truly fetid attempt at a movie and so bad that it didn’t get finished as I feared for the safety of my TV. Hence my reluctance to class this as a review. Utter tripe.

In contrast it IS possible to take this play and adapt the location. I saw the RSC in Stratford perform Macbeth in 2004 and it was set in the period of the Great War… and worked.

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