The first hint that something was seriously amiss was when I opened the box from Amazon and saw Dalila holding a pistol to Samson's throat. Although history was not my best subject in school, I knew that the Philistines didn't have firearms. The blurb on the back cover states that the two directors, one an Israeli and the other a Palestinian, decided to modernize this ancient Biblical story and transport it to the current Middle East so we could better understand the political dynamics in that conflict. That's right. Hold your nose. More Euro-trash.
Marianna Tarasova was quite alluring as Delila. She has a nice voice and nicer shoulders. But I found her simulated anal sex scene vulgar, gratuitous, and absurd. It's the first time I've ever seen someone sing while having simulated sex. This performance has lots of simulated sex. All of it less interesting than an Army training film.
Even with the ludicrous setting, I could still have enjoyed it if there was a mildly entertaining Bacchanale. You have to see it to believe it. Nothing remotely resembling ballet. It resembled the drill team performance from Bill Murray's movie Stripes or the zombies from the Night of the Living Dead. People twirling their assault rifles and attempting to copulate with them.
The end of the opera was predictable. Samson put on a belt of dynamite sticks and was about to explode as a suicide bomber when the curtain mercifully brought this hideous abomination to an end.
Everyone has a right to their opinion on politics. But don't hijack great classic operas to bore me with your moronic viewpoints. I want to see what the audience saw on opening night. Nothing more. Nothing less.
The other reviewer describes quite well, what you can expect from this dvd (although I am not sure where the person got the idea about the anal sex scene from, could have been, but not necessarily), but all the reasons for that person to dislike this production, were the reasons for me to buy the DVD. I watched a traditional production before and thought to myself that this opera would be more interesting, if it would be updated in the way it has been done in this production. All I would like to add is that the directors managed quite well to portray the perversion of the situation in Gaza nowadays in this opera production. So 5 stars from me!!
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