Sunday, April 24, 2016

Ten Worthy Film Adaptations of Shakespeare Plays

1 the Children’s Midsummer Night’s Dream, Christine Edzard 

2 Othello, Orson Welles  

3 Macbeth, Roman Polanski  

4 King Lear, Grigori Kozintsev  

5 The Tempest, Derek Jarman  

6 Hamlet, Michael Almereyda  

7 Richard III, Laurence Olivier  

8 As You Like it, Paul Czinner  

9 Romeo and Juliet, Franco Zeffirelli  

10 Cymbeline, Elijah Moshinksky
Here there are two limitations I set myself that made this list doubly difficult: no play could be cited twice, as well as, again, no film maker could appear more than once.  Though Kurosawa is among my favorite film makers and he has based at least three films on plays by Shakespeare, none of them are faithful to the original text.   Kozintsev’s King Lear, on the other hand, follows a faithful translation by Boris Pasternak.  There may well be other, even better, foreign language adaptations of Shakespeare, but I haven’t seen them.  I’ve seen most of those that have been done in English.

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