Niviene (niviene) wrote,

Hamlet - National Theatre Live

It's time for more National Theatre Live....this time it's Hamlet simulcast by Cineplex movie theatre. About 3.5 hours of it! The play was held at the Barbican Theatre in London, UK. Hamlet is played by Benedict Cumberbatch. He's was really good in it (but I liked him better in Frankenstein). I found his version of Hamlet was portrayed as having lost his mind. The part on paper lends the actor the choice of choosing either cray cray or sane & feigning crazy.

I wasn't too fond of Horatio played by Leo Bill. I'm not sure if that was a director's choice or the actors but he wasn't compelling and I kept wondering why in the heck Hamlet was friends with this guy. I wonder what others who went thought of his portrayal?

Sian Brooke as poor Ophelia was brilliant playing a young girl who has lost her mind over love. Her death in this version is left for the audience to decide if she committed suicide or if possibly Gertrude (Anastasia Hille) murdered her based on the staging of it.

The ever funny and personal favourite characters of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern (Matthew Steer, Rudi Dharmalingam) were a bit disappointing and didn't stand out as much as I've seen in other dramatizations of this play. It's all in how you deliver their lines imho!

Props go specially to Ciarán Hinds as Claudius who did an amazing job but we'd expect no less of such a great actor as well as to Sergo Vares as Fortinbras who also did a really great job.

The play's director cut some speeches like Polonius' "Neither a borrower nor a lender be" but I suppose that's neither here nor there. Many in the audience had never read nor seen Hamlet before which I found rather shocking considering most schools throughout the ages make it a mandatory read in English class. They were quite shocked by the stabbing death of Polonius when he's hiding behind the curtain (Hamlet thinks he's Claudius) and that caused for some laughter from those of us in the know. Prior to the start of the play there's a candid Q&A with Benedict Cumberbatch shown. He's very relaxed & approachable off camera and doesn't come across as arrogant & cold imho. He seems like quite a nice guy outside of his movie persona.
Tags: ntlive, shakespeare, theatre
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