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Choisya
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Re: Various productions and some weapons.

It would be interesting to see the viewing figures for the BBC productions and the simpler stage productions of Shakespeare with those providing greater spectacle. I suspect that it is the 'spectacle' which has always kept people watching the plays, just as in Shakespeare's day the introduction of trapdoors and overhead rigging at the Globe was used for spectacular stage effects. (The use of a cannon during a performance of Henry VIII ignited the thatched roof - a spectacle too far!) If performances are too simple they become play-readings, not dramas, and would not attract the larger audiences needed to make the money which keeps the provincial and international theatres going. I do not believe that producers and directors mount unusual productions for their own aggrandisement and suspect that many are mounted to revive the flagging economics of a theatre company, just as Burbage revitalised the theatres of Shakespeare's day.




alfprof212 wrote:
So, Everyman, would it be safe to say that you prefer the BBC productions of Shakespeare (or others similar) over interpretations like the most recent movie of "Midsummer Night's Dream" (with Rupert Everett and Calista Flockhart) and Lurhman's version of "Romeo and Juliet?"


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Laurel
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Re: Various productions and some weapons.

I love the BBC productions myself, and only wish they would lower the price on the entire set. There are some real jewels of acting and production in that series.



alfprof212 wrote:
So, Everyman, would it be safe to say that you prefer the BBC productions of Shakespeare (or others similar) over interpretations like the most recent movie of "Midsummer Night's Dream" (with Rupert Everett and Calista Flockhart) and Lurhman's version of "Romeo and Juliet?"


"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
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Choisya
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Re: Various productions and some weapons.

If you mean this collection, it has been reduced over here Laurel - can you get the reduction in the US?

http://www.bbcshop.com/invt/bbcdvd1767




Laurel wrote:
I love the BBC productions myself, and only wish they would lower the price on the entire set. There are some real jewels of acting and production in that series.



alfprof212 wrote:
So, Everyman, would it be safe to say that you prefer the BBC productions of Shakespeare (or others similar) over interpretations like the most recent movie of "Midsummer Night's Dream" (with Rupert Everett and Calista Flockhart) and Lurhman's version of "Romeo and Juliet?"





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Everyman
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Re: Various productions and some weapons.



alfprof212 wrote:
So, Everyman, would it be safe to say that you prefer the BBC productions of Shakespeare (or others similar) over interpretations like the most recent movie of "Midsummer Night's Dream" (with Rupert Everett and Calista Flockhart) and Lurhman's version of "Romeo and Juliet?"


I have basically given up on watching movies of Shakespeare, so I can't really comment. But I do like most of the BBC series productions I've seen, although they tend to be more ponderous and self-inflated at times than I think is really true to Shakespeare.

Basically, Shakespeare appealed to the 16th equivalent of both cultural crowd and to the NASCAR crowd. BBC sometimes seems to forget that latter audience.
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Laurel
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Re: Various productions and some weapons.

Ooooh.... Perhaps there's hope. It's not here or in Canada, yet, just smaller sets I'll save my pennies in case it comes. Makes me wish I had an all-regions DVD player!



Choisya wrote:
If you mean this collection, it has been reduced over here Laurel - can you get the reduction in the US?

http://www.bbcshop.com/invt/bbcdvd1767




Laurel wrote:
I love the BBC productions myself, and only wish they would lower the price on the entire set. There are some real jewels of acting and production in that series.



alfprof212 wrote:
So, Everyman, would it be safe to say that you prefer the BBC productions of Shakespeare (or others similar) over interpretations like the most recent movie of "Midsummer Night's Dream" (with Rupert Everett and Calista Flockhart) and Lurhman's version of "Romeo and Juliet?"








"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
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book-nut
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Registered: ‎11-25-2006
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Re: I love a good debate!



cheryl_shell wrote:

book-nut wrote:
The reason I come here in the first place is because I like to hear all of your different views on the books/stories. It helps me, personally, to study the story in the more open-minded way. I don't know why some of you are SO determined to turn it into a black/white "I'm right, so you have to be wrong" argument. I thought the reason we were here was to discuss and share our different views; so, for everybody's sake, why don't we all try to get along?

book-nut




I'm with you, book-nut! And let us hear your thoughts more often!




Thanks Cheryl! "Diplomacy" is my middle name! I noticed most of the 'arguers' managed to ignore the post though! All I would ask is that everyone keep an open mind and remember that we're all here to learn. I know I don't live in a "black & white" world.
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book-nut
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Re: I love a good debate!



Everyman wrote:

Carmenere_lady wrote:
With all due respect, Everyman, I don't think that is true. For good or for bad, how many times have people walked out of a movie, for example, and say "That was nothing like the book" or "The book was so much better than the movie". Or have you ever read a book and create the movie verion in your head? Choosing who will play what parts? I hope you have. We, as humans are able to interpret, we are able to create, have opinions and yes, as you've mentioned in a previous post, we are free to do such things

That's true. But it's a matter of degree. When is it interpretive license and when it is just wholesale slaughter of the original?

I do contend that we do things to Shakespeare that are not done with any other author. Can you imagine, for example, a movie of David Copperfield set in 1930s France, or Pride and Prejudice with people living in modern cities and driving around in motorcars, or Portrait of Lady set in Japan, or Our Town produced about a village in Russia in 1919, or Huckleberry Finn moved from the Mississippi to the Thames?

I'm not talking just about relatively minor changes in the approach to a work, or emphasizing different aspects of a book, or choosing actors who don't look like we think they should look like.

Can you suggest any movie made from a book or play you have seen which deviates from the original work as much as, say, a production of Richard III ripped out of any relationship with the historical people Shakespeare wrote about and set in the 1930s, or of Midsummer Night's Dream with bicycles, or done underwater with scuba tanks? I have never seen any book-based movie or non-Shakespearean play which was so deviant from the original work and still bore the original author's name. Do you know of any which have?




Well, you must admit... it's quite a testament to Shakespeare's appeal that we are using (and re-using!) his stories approximately five hundred years later.
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book-nut
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Re: Is ANYTHING too far?

>
Well, I am a believer in free speech, as you no doubt realize.


I'm with you, on this one... "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." I don't see anything wrong with directors "updating" classics like that. People who might not normally be exposed to (or interested in) Shakespeare (or history, for that matter) might learn something. What's wrong with that?

No, I don't watch them. But I don't have to. That's the whole point of free speech.
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Everyman
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Re: Is ANYTHING too far?

[ Edited ]

book-nut wrote:
Well, I am a believer in free speech, as you no doubt realize.

I'm with you, on this one... "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." I don't see anything wrong with directors "updating" classics like that. People who might not normally be exposed to (or interested in) Shakespeare (or history, for that matter) might learn something. What's wrong with that?

No, I don't watch them. But I don't have to. That's the whole point of free speech.


I'm as much for free speech as you are, but free speech must still be truthful. There is no free speech protection for defamation. Which is as it should be.

IMO, some of what is done to Shakespeare is simply dishonest.

That's not free speech, any more than for me to go around saying that book-nut believes that all of Shakespeare's works should be burned and never produced again would be permitted free speech.

Freedom requires responsibility.

Message Edited by Everyman on 03-25-200707:41 PM

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Laurel
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Re: I love a good debate!

book-nut wrote:




Well, you must admit... it's quite a testament to Shakespeare's appeal that we are using (and re-using!) his stories approximately five hundred years later.




Great point!
"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
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Carmenere_lady
Posts: 529
Registered: ‎11-05-2006
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Re: Is ANYTHING too far?



Everyman wrote:

book-nut wrote:
Well, I am a believer in free speech, as you no doubt realize.

I'm with you, on this one... "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." I don't see anything wrong with directors "updating" classics like that. People who might not normally be exposed to (or interested in) Shakespeare (or history, for that matter) might learn something. What's wrong with that?

No, I don't watch them. But I don't have to. That's the whole point of free speech.


I'm as much for free speech as you are, but free speech must still be truthful. There is no free speech protection for defamation. Which is as it should be.

IMO, some of what is done to Shakespeare is simply dishonest.

That's not free speech, any more than for me to go around saying that book-nut believes that all of Shakespeare's works should be burned and never produced again would be permitted free speech.

Freedom requires responsibility.

Message Edited by Everyman on 03-25-200707:41 PM







But Everyman, don't you think that Shakespeare himself took liberties in writing his plays. Afterall, look at Macbeth, Shakespeare practically rewrote history!
Lynda

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"Um, maybe."
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It is with books as with men; a very small number play a great part.
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Everyman
Posts: 9,216
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Is ANYTHING too far?


Carmenere_lady wrote:
But Everyman, don't you think that Shakespeare himself took liberties in writing his plays. Afterall, look at Macbeth, Shakespeare practically rewrote history!

Absolutely. And I have said this before.

Shakespeare borrowed (stole, if you prefer) most of his plots, many of his characters and events, and even some of his language from other authors.

BUT, he put his OWN name on the resulting product. He didn't produce "King Richard III, by Thomas More." He didn't put on "The Merchant of Venice, by Giovanni Fiorentino." He didn't market The Winter's Tale as being by Robert Greene, even though he followed the plot and characters of Greene's then fairly recent (1588) novel Pandosto quite closely.

He took these works, adapted them the way he wanted them, and put his own name on them. He didn't represent his interpretations as being the works of the original authors.

I have absolutely no problem with people who borrow Shakespeare's plots, characters, even some of his language, rewrite it with their own interpretations and adaptations, and take both the credit and the blame for the work themselves by marketing it as their work, not pushing either off credit or blame for their work onto Shakespeare. He can't complain; he did the same thing himself.

What I object to is taking Shakespeare's work, "adapting" it to make it something quite different from what he wrote, and leaving his name on it. That I consider dishonest.
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