12 June 2013 4:26 AM, PDT | CineVue | See recent CineVue news »

★★★★☆ After delivering a barnstorming superhero flick with Avengers Assemble (2012), Joss Whedon took the curious decision to adapt William Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing, filming in his own Los Angeles home under tight budgetary restrictions and time constraints. By supplanting his celebrated dialogue with that of the greatest wordsmith of them all, Whedon could have easily set himself up for a fall, but the director shows himself to be an arch and intuitive interpreter of the Bard, his film playing like a younger, scrappier descendant of Kenneth Branagh's definitive 1993 version of the same play.

One of the great Shakespeare comedies, Much Ado About Nothing opens with Don Pedro (Reed Diamond), the Prince of Aragon, with his followers Benedick (Alexis Denisof) and Claudio (Fran Kranz), visiting Leonato (Clark Gregg), the Duke of Messina, father of Hero (Jillian Morgese) and uncle to Beatrice (Amy Acker). While Claudio and Hero immediately fall »

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