Shakespeare on Film
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This carefully researched, accessibly written book offers textual and contextual analysis covering an extensive breadth of Shakespeares films, ranging from the silent era to the present day.
Nine lively and thought-provoking chapters examine the films as indicators of the cultural moment of their production. Each is analysed in terms of its technical and interpretive mechanisms and considered as part of a wider Shakespeare performance history.
Part I: 'Degrees of Remove': Translating the Language, Translating the Story
1. An Excellent Dumb Discourse: British and American Shakespeare Films, 1899-1916 2. 'Wresting an Alphabet': Continental European Shakespeare Films, 1907-22 3. Cross-cultural Narrative Rhymes: The Shakespeare Films of Akira Kurosawa 4. Roguish Interventions: American Shakespearean Offshoots
Part II: Moment and Context: How History Works on Story
5. Historically Juxtaposed Beans (I): A Midsummer Night's Dream on Film
6. Historically Juxtaposed Beans (II): The Tempest on Film
7. Boxing with Ghosts: The Shakespeare Films of Kenneth Branagh
8. Leaves of Brass and Gads of Steel: Cinema as Subject in Shakespeare Films, 1991-2000
- A historical contextualising of the emergence, growth and developments of Shakespeare on film
- Textual readings of a broad spectrum of Shakespeare films (mainstream and off-centre, early through to very recent) from a range of critical perspectives – auteurist, historicist, reception studies
- Examines questions of identity, taxonomy and labelling – in particular as they are raised by the extensive corpus of silent Shakespeare films, foreign language films and narrative spin-offs
- Considers the place of Shakespeare as a cultural icon in contemporary culture, and the ways in which the screen has helped not only to reflect but to mould this product
"With its twenty-two high-resolution illustrations and on-the-spot introductions to its various parts, Shakespeare on Film represents an invigorating read and establishes a benchmark for subsequent inquiry."
"This is a handy reference point for any student; it is also a cornucopia of scholarship for the dedicated critic."
Ramona Wray, Shakespeare Quarterly
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