The Tempest [Blu-ray]
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Top Customer Reviews
As a literature professor who has been teaching The Tempest for a decade now, I have always been singularly bemused by the lack of a filmed version that really captures the magical spirit of the play. The old TV Richard Burton show is well-acted but silly, the BBC version has great actors but terrible, flat production values, Prospero's Books is brilliant but incomprehensible to all but those who know the play intimately, Derek Jarman's version is terribly dated and, despite being a good "film," just doesn't work as The Tempest, in my opinion. The other, "scholastic" releases are plagued by poor production and/or undistinguished acting. And I won't even bother with "adaptations" of the plot, such as Forbidden Planet or Cassavettes's Tempest.
Until this version, the only truly excellent version of The Tempest was the HBO animated one, but at 25 minutes, not much of Shakespeare's story remained intact.
Just last week I had the great pleasure of seeing Julie Taymor's The Tempest in London. It was absolutely amazing. The magic was there! The acting, for the most part, was brilliant.Read more ›
If you're the same, then you can relax - this is brilliant, and I wish that Mirren & Taymor would do some other Shakespeare plays with Helen in the (strong, male) lead. Aside from a few minutes in the very beginning, where I thought the verisimilitude of the storm interfered with actually being able to understand what the actors were SAYING - there weren't any problems with either the language or being able to follow the plot.
Despite changing of the gender of the lead character, all the other elements we expect from Shakespeare remain intact: elevated, aristocratic figures bickering over their positions or inheritance, a love story featuring the younger generation of characters, a comedic subplot running alongside the primary plot, etc. And the acting was great top to bottom - those who weren't aware that RusselL Brand could actually act will be very pleasantly surprised, and we get the amazing performances we expected from the "known" names. Reeve Carney comes off least well, but that is the fault of the character having so little to do (and most of THAT being to look attractive and moon over the young woman).
All in all, I was very happy I was able to catch this in the cinema, and can hardly wait until I'm able to own a copy.
Helen Mirren is actually (Who can deny it?)one of the three best actresses in the world. She chews the whole show all the way through. But additionally the narrative rhtyhm never decays. Taymor (The Lion king and Titus, proves by far how domains Shakespeare's nerve) never abuses of the visual effects (dislike many of her colleagues).
And the outcome could not be more succesful. One of the best twenty films of the last year. No doubt it and go for it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The Tempest is far and away my favorite Shakespeare. I have seen it performed multiple times and re-read the play at least once a year. Read morePublished 1 month ago by MeMyselfAndI-AndThatGuyOverThere
I adore this performance!! The cast is amazingly perfect, with a unique and thought inspiring twist on a timeless adventure into Shakespeare!Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
I really enjoyed it but not quite enough for four stars but it was a good watch. I was able to follow the story much easier than other Tempest screen adaptations.Published 2 months ago by Jovian
I hate to do it, but I have to be honest, this was a poorly translated TEMPEST.
-First of all, Helen Mirren is a goddess, but she didn't wield the kind of power needed... Read more
I like this version and changing Prospero to a female doesn't really change much but there is something lacking here. The actors are good so it's not that. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Randee Baty
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