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  • Top 5 Edited Shakespeare Film Adaptations

    Top 5 Edited Shakespeare Film Adaptations

    February 10, 2010, 8:33 am
    Really, any play written for theatre is extremely hard to translate to film and make it filmic. This is especially true for particularly wordy plays, such as anything written by Shakespeare. The number one rule "show not tell" has to be creatively re-thought to make it work in order to translate to screen, and to do that is more easily said than done.



    Criteria:
    -Original text must be (mostly) kept in tact
    -Editing brings something unique/new/particularly "film" to the play
    -Usual rules of montage, continuity, etc.
    Top 5 Edited Shakespeare Film Adaptations
    5. As You Like It (2006)

    At first this film makes the viewer go "eh?" (and not just Canadians...). The cast is multicultural and it takes place in Japan, adding a Japanese cultural twist to the play. Consequently the movie is beautiful to look at and easy to watch, as well as well acted and cut. I especially liked the sumo wrestling scene, because it had a particularly well thought out montage: tense, interesting, and overall cool.
    Top 5 Edited Shakespeare Film Adaptations
    4. Romeo + Juliet (1996)

    This is the epitome of modernizing Shakespeare, and the editing has a lot to do with how they managed to pull it off. It intercuts guerrilla-style news clips, making it clear to the viewer that the city of Verona is inadvertently intertwined in the conflict between two families (companies?). When a Capulet sneezes, it’s more newsworthy than a war overseas. The overall editing style is fast-paced, choppy, and has no problems using cheesy transitions such as box wipes. It’s effective in making the movie very stylized and interesting to watch, but ultimately it hits the viewer over the head and actually gets a bit tiring. That said, it takes the play to a completely different level than Shakespeare could’ve imagined. Makes me wonder what he’d think about it...
    Top 5 Edited Shakespeare Film Adaptations
    3. Richard III (1995)

    This film’s editing is so well thought out that it sucks you into the story, and makes it easy to understand, follow, and watch. It has an almost "call and answer" style of editing, where one angle is perfectly followed up by an opposite angle, and conceptually it makes sense in the viewer’s head. Bonus points for Sir Ian breaking the 3rd wall and making his monologues have more of an audience interaction than the typical talking to oneself. This helps it stay true to the original point of a monologue in a play rather than just representing the monologue on film.
    Top 5 Edited Shakespeare Film Adaptations
    2. Hamlet (1996)

    When I started watching the film, my notes consisted of "too rushed" and "weird montage/cut— my eye is going all over the place." It seemed as if the editing was trying too hard to be purely illustrative and showcase the acting more than tell the story, but I found myself ensconced and thinking "wow I could learn something from this edit" about 15 minutes in. Suddenly my notes took a different turn and I realized what an interesting way to tell Hamlet this is. Brian Blessed is terrifying the first time Hamlet meets his ghost, and this is largely in part due to the heavy cutting and particular way in which the montage was pieced together leading up to his reveal. It was at that point that I realized that I could forgive the "too rushed" feel that I originally had— aside from the fact that the epic film is 4 hours long, even rushed.
    Top 5 Edited Shakespeare Film Adaptations
    1. Titus (1999)

    I still don’t totally get the kid throughout the film, but I do understand that the montage was so beautiful to watch that it was hypnotic. It was hard to pull away and take notes. Every movement makes sense and leads to the next movement as if it was supposed to be there. On top of that, it could jump from ancient to modern art direction and still carry the story. It’s obvious what drives this film— the edit and the art direction take precedence over the text, and makes it a successful film adaptation.

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  • Other Postings By Member
    • Top 5 Edited Moments of Despair in a Xmas Movie
      EDITING

      Top 5 Edited Moments of Despair in a Xmas Movie

      December 16, 2009, 12:26 pm
      Christmas time is here and I am very open about my emotional resemblance to Ebenezer Scrooge regarding the season. To be completely honest, the overdose of Christmas music and decorations in every supermarket, shop, and restaurant I frequent gives me the urge to bust out my chainsaw and do a hyper-realistic Jason impression rather than be jolly. So, to kick off my first ever Christmas blog I thought that I’d watch people having crappy Christmases and subject my readers to the same Christmas pain by way of the top 5 MOMENTS OF DESPAIR...

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    • Best Edited Lightsaber Fight in a Star Wars Movie
      EDITING

      Best Edited Lightsaber Fight in a Star Wars Movie

      December 2, 2009, 12:17 pm
      I don’t really have a good reason for choosing this week’s topic beyond that I just felt like watching all the Star Wars movies for the hell of it. So you’re going to get the brunt of my passing urge this week!

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    • Top 5 Edited Humankind Obliteration Sequences
      EDITING

      Top 5 Edited Humankind Obliteration Sequences

      November 18, 2009, 12:11 pm
      The hot conspiracy theory of the time is Earth’s impending doom, which has always been a popular movie scenario. However, it’s one thing to ward off impending doom and another to be right in the centre of destruction. In any case, it’s interesting to see humanity’s obsession and awe with the concept of obliteration—hyper-real special effects movies about the apocalypse always do really well in the box office. With the recent release of <em>2012</em> the film (and what seems to be a slew of other apocalyptic-themed movies), I thought it would be appropriate to showcase the best sequences featuring the main character known as "Armageddon." Just remember that should something as catastrophic as anything in these films actually happen, there will always be at least one survivor: the earth.

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    • Top 5 Edited Disaster Wedding Ceremonies
      EDITING

      Top 5 Edited Disaster Wedding Ceremonies

      November 4, 2009, 12:03 pm
      This weekend I’m getting married— so I thought it would be fitting to do a topic this week on wedding scenes. But not just any wedding scenes... wedding disaster scenes. Don’t get me wrong, I’m 110% sure that he’s the one I want to marry, and I’m pretty sure that there are no evil villains planning to kidnap me in the middle of the ceremony, but I figured I’d get all these situations out of the way vicariously through these films before my own wedding!

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    • Top 5 Courtroom Cross Examinations in a Feature
      EDITING

      Top 5 Courtroom Cross Examinations in a Feature

      October 21, 2009, 6:16 pm
      I love courtroom scenes. There’s something particularly exciting about watching evidence and clues unfold in a courtroom scene. Maybe it’s the fact that each case that’s ever brought into one is inherently mysterious in nature. Maybe it’s the actors portraying lawyers as the epitome of a battle between good and evil. Or maybe it’s just fun to watch people argue. In any case, no one can ever help but feel sorry for the person in the chair who gets the tough cross examination. ...unless he’s guilty.

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    • 5 Sequences That Integrate Food ina Bigger Context
      EDITING

      5 Sequences That Integrate Food ina Bigger Context

      October 7, 2009, 6:08 pm
      It’s funny how images of food can make us hungry. It’s also funny that if you change the context in which we see the image of food that that hunger can change into disgust, lust, or even produce existential thoughts within ourselves. As our editing deity Eisenstein taught us, context is almost always built in the editing room because it has to do with the juxtaposition of one image next to another, and food is one of those things that can go in any direction if placed next to the "right thing."

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    • The Top 5 Edited John Hughes Films
      EDITING

      The Top 5 Edited John Hughes Films

      September 23, 2009, 4:32 pm
      Last month, John Hughes passed away and left a legacy of high school experience films and influenced how they would be made from then on. Every kid that was born in the 80’s feels a connection to the high school situations and labels that he so perfectly conveyed in celluloid—probably even more than the kids that were actually <strong>IN</strong> high school in the 1980’s did. This week is dedicated to a (rather late) tribute to John Hughes by showcasing:

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    • Disney’s Most Awkward Transitions into Music
      EDITING

      Disney’s Most Awkward Transitions into Music

      September 9, 2009, 4:23 pm
      When deciding how to add a song and dance sequence into a film, one always hopes that the transition is relatively smooth, seeing as most people don’t usually break out into song and dance at random intervals. However, the transition into singing isn’t always the cleanest that it could be. Consequently, the viewer is left wondering why the heck the directors decided that the song was good enough to be kept in the movie without putting enough effort into making it fit properly into the film. In the interest of keeping this top 5 blog not just about the "best" but also about the worst, weirdest, and more... I bring you...

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    • Top Car 5 Chases Based on Editing
      EDITING

      Top Car 5 Chases Based on Editing

      August 26, 2009, 4:09 pm
      The tires of the Mustang squeal as the car drifts around a corner. Our hero is holding onto the steering wheel for dear life as he attempts to get away from the evil bad guy. The suspense continues to build in the audience as they hold their breath. Will he get away? Will he crash? This weeks Edit Decision List covers the top five car chase scenes based on editing.

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    • 100 to 1: Overwhelmed Protagonist Fight scenes
      EDITING

      100 to 1: Overwhelmed Protagonist Fight scenes

      August 19, 2009, 3:47 pm
      The protagonist walks into a room, ready to pick a fight with the bad guy and save the world (or some damsel in distress). The moment is akin to the last level of an old video game, where the mega-boss stands 5 inches in front of your character on the screen then laughs as the controller freezes— preventing you from moving your character to attack the boss. Suddenly, the rest of the boss’ lackeys pour out from every orifice in the room and threaten to take our hero out. He’s outnumbered 20 to 1... how is he going to get out of this one? Well, thanks to the magic of movie editing (and some nice choreography) he can beat an impossible amount of attackers all by himself!

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