John Crowley (crowleycrow) wrote,
John Crowley

Rough magic

Watched Julie Taymor's Tempest last night. It was wonderful throughout, though (as is common now) a bit darker-hued than you'd expect. I was reminded of Max Reinhardt's 1930s film of "Midsummer Night's Dream" in the casting, assembled as in a dream -- Alfred Molina, David Strathairn, Chis Cooper (!), Alan Cumming, Tom Conti -- all doing classic strong Shakespeare verse-speaking. ANd of course Helen Mirren as Prospero -- sorry, Prospera -- giving one of the most moving performances in a Shakespeare film I've ever seen. Somehow her exchanges with Miranda were more touching and intimate as mother-daughter than as father-daughter, and her concern for both her lost power and her child were enriched. Her great last speech ("This rough magic I here abjure") had me in tears, maybe because I feel myself to be an old (would-be) mage in the same condition.
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