July 14, 2015

A Midsummer Night's Dream (2014)

A Midsummer Night's Dream (2014) - Movie Review
Directed by: Julie Taymor
Country: USA

Movie Review: Julie Taymor’s fondness for staged films is widely known, and the filmmaker makes now her third incursion in Shakespearean territory with the comedy “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, which was captured in the sequence of her own off-Broadway production play. After the huge visibility obtained with the Broadway's “The Lion King” in 1997, her cinematic career began strongly and confident two years later with the gloomy “Titus”, starring Anthony Hopkins as the title character. After “Frida”, a quaint biopic about the surrealist Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, and “Across the Universe”, a lame musical inspired by the music of The Beatles, she returns to Shakespeare with the “The Tempest”, her weakest film so far. “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, despite extended in duration and filmed in a real theater with an audience, compensates what the previous film had failed in terms of entertainment and craftsmanship. Dramatized with tenacity and often humor by the great cast, the story is faithful to the original, interconnecting four young Athenian lovers (Hermia, Lysander, Helena, and Demetrius), a troupe of six laborers who are working on a play, and the fairyland characters (king Oberon, queen Titania, and a funny supernatural elflike creature called Puck). In this keen hybrid composition of live theater and cinema, Mrs. Taymor’s direction never loses track of the best moments offered by the settings of Es Devlin and the choreography of Brian Brooks. The score by the Academy awarded, Elliot Goldenthal, is another added value to a film that needs you receptive and in the right mood to fully enjoy it. Moviegoers will be divided, saying that better adaptations of Shakespeare’s plays were made for cinema. Even agreeing with them and considering that theater is not my cup of tea, I must say that I’ve found in this particular version an exquisite appeal that comes mostly from the performances of the cast and the technical implementation.

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