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Shakespeare's intertwined love polygons begin to get complicated from the start--Demetrius and Lysander both want Hermia but she only has eyes for Lysander. Bad news is, Hermia's father wants Demetrius for a son-in-law. On the outside is Helena, whose unreturned love burns hot for Demetrius. Hermia and Lysander plan to flee from the city under cover of darkness but are pursued by an enraged Demetrius (who is himself pursued by an enraptured Helena). In the forest, unbeknownst to the mortals, Oberon and Titania (King and Queen of the faeries) are having a spat over a servant boy. The plot twists up when Oberon's head mischief-maker, Puck, runs loose with a flower which causes people to fall in love with the first thing they see upon waking. Throw in a group of labourers preparing a play for the Duke's wedding (one of whom is given a donkey's head and Titania for a lover by Puck) and the complications become fantastically funny. Written by
In the play within a play scene, Bottom alternates between wearing and not wearing leggings. See more »
[Puck has turned Bottom into a donkey]
Bottom, thou art changed. What do I see on thee?
Bottom the Weaver:
What do you see? What; do you see an ass' head of your own, do you?
Bless me. Thou art translated.
[all run off, leaving Bottom alone on the stage]
Bottom the Weaver:
Why do they run away? I see their knavery. This is to make an ass of me.
See more »
from the 1843 German stage production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream"
Composed by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy (as Felix Mendelssohn)
Performed by the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin
Conducted by Vladimir Ashkenazy
Courtesy of The Decca Record Company Limited, London
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Music See more »
Visually stunning, a little stilted, but a must see!
A Midsummer Night's Dream is a very complicated play, and can get very silly at times, and this film is surprisingly faithful to the play. Yes, there was an attempt to partially modernise it, therefore the script wasn't as good as it could have been. The film itself is lovingly designed, with lavish costumes, stunning sets(my favourite being the wood set) and handsome cinematography. The music was lovely with clever use of music by the likes of Mendelssohn and Verdi. I thought the acting was very good indeed, Kevin Kline stealing the show as Bottom, most of the time hilarious, especially in the play scene, when we are shown what a bad actor Bottom really is. Michelle Pfeiffer is lovely also, and Rupert Everett is very charming also as Oberon. Callista Flockhart convinces also as Helena, and Stanley Tucci has a ball as Puck. The direction is competent, but my only other criticism is that the film is a little overlong. Overall, I genuinely enjoyed this film, not as good as Much Ado About Nothing(with Kenneth Branagh) or Macbeth (with Jon Finch), so I will happily award it 8/10. Bethany Cox.
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