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|Index||15 reviews in total|
wow i just saw this last week and i loved it. The cast is amazing,
Mary-Louise Parker as a bi-polar Ophelia, Jonathan Penner as an angst
hero, Jamey Sheridan as an evil Claudius, Phillip Baker Hall, Maury
it's so funny and well done. Doesn't talk down to you.
A truly excellent Hamlet adaptation.
The look of the film also deserves mention, it is lush and eerie. Very well directed.
Did you ever see a movie where everything added up to nothing? Well that is how I felt after watching "Let the Devil Wear Black". A whole bunch of unlikable characters with little or no development, try killing each other. Jonathan Penner is good as the son seeking revenge on his uncle for murdering his father. The problem is, the film comes across as an almost incoherent series of events. There is lots of small talk, totally unrelated to the story, that constantly bogs things down. Unlike the plot description of violent killings, shocking suicides and a thrilling plot that will shake you to the core, I wound up merely shaking my head. - MERK
This one's a real return to film noir. An updated version of Hamlet, with a positively unique spin on the now-cliched "Alas, poor Yorick" speech. Probably could've done without the "Pepto Bismol" scene, but aside from that it was a great story (of course) well told. Performances were terrific all around, but especially Jonathan Banks as "Satch."
A bold and worthy attempt to update Shakespeare's Hamlet by stripping
the play of its dialogue, and turning it into a contemporary murder
Of course it isn't always successful, I suspect that no such strategy would be, since Shakespeare's language is actually more important than his plotting.
Still, the sincerity of cast and crew carry the effort a great ways. The Rozencrantz and Guildenstern sup-plot was, I thought, particularly well-handled.
I have shown this to people who say they hate Shakespeare, without telling them the connection to the bard, and they have generally found it fascinating. Perhaps this is the only way some people can "get" Shakespeare.
definitely worth a viewing.
Take "Hamlet." Strip it to it's bare bones. Throw the bones as high as
you can up into the air. Assemble them in whatever order they land and
you'll pretty much have the plot to "Let The Devil Wear Black."
It's been a long standing policy of mine never to criticize an actor for taking a shot at the role of Hamlet. (Even a barely recognizable Hamlet like this one.) I mean, what actor worth his salt *wouldn't* take a run at Hamlet? And truth be told, Jonathan Penner does takes his best shot at it.
Unfortunately, Penner and Title torpedo the effort with orgulous writing and plot developments so painfully aimless I kept hoping for Zombie Shakespeare to rise from his grave, shamble onto the set and start ripping those responsible for this embarrassment limb-from-limb.
I caught this ditty by chance and was I glad I did. It is a film written and acted suited to my tastes. Jonathan Penner was captivating within his mannerisms, gorgeous to look at and a pleasure to see him act. Plot is grand. Everything else too. I am not giving much more away, solely my two opinions, aforementioned and the last: RENT IT if you find it.
this is well worth a viewing. satisfying and filmic -- a standout. a great director...is this a gal or guy? just cause the sex scenes are steamy. mary louise parker is excellent here, crazy and haunting. penner is great. jamey sheridan, maury chaykin this just has an awesome cast and it's a blast.
"Let the Devil Wear Black" is dark, sexy and smart modern interpretation of "Hamlet". Distinctively noirish, this clever film maintains a fast and steady pace that explores the deep rooted psyches of the main characters. Although the film surely would be characterized as a thriller, the writing and directing are strong enough to justify "Devil" as a character piece as well. Stacy Title's wry sense of humor is apparent from beginning to end. Furthermore, Ms. Title's shooting style, complemented by Jim Whittaker's cinematography, is more imaginative and animated as compared to her previous film "The Last Supper". This film is funny, tragic and engaging. It is truly a gem and not to be missed.
**SPOILERS** Not being up to take over and run his father's vast
real-estate and business empire 19 year-old Jack Lyne, Jonathan Penner,
is shocked to find out that his widowed mom Helen, Jacqueline Bisset,is
planning to marry his hated and sleazy Uncle Carl,Jamey Sheridan.
Doing nothing but getting smashed, with booze drugs and fists, Jack drops into one of his father's bars. While getting a load off his mind in the restroom Jack hears someone, on the other side of the stall, tell him that it was his Uncle Carl who really did his father in and made it look like a heart attack.
Running out and checking everyones shoes, thats the only way he can identify the person who gave him the shocking news, Jack is beat up and thrown out by the bartender and a number of outraged customers. it seems obvious from the make of the shoes that the person who told Jack about his Uncle Carl's treachery is non-other then the family lawyer and his late dad's good friend Sol Hirsh, Philip Baker Hall.
At a party at Hirsh's place that night, after having some hot action with Hirsh's unstable and dog food eating daughter Julie (Mary-Louise Parker), Jack again sees written on a mirror, obviously by Sol, that Carl murdered his father and "what is he waiting for"! It turns out that Carl is also at the party and so is Jack's mother where their to announce their upcoming engagement and marriage.
Jack who's recovering from a sever mental breakdown want's to stop the marriage but doesn't feel that killing Carl is worth spending is entire life behind bars. On the other hand Carl,in having Jack murdered, does and is not at all planning to pay the price of his freedom for killing him and plans to make Jack's death look like an accident or robbery.
The movie is a jumble of mistakes with Carl having these two creeps Bradbury & Brautigan,Randell Batikoff & Norma Needus, plan to whack Jack but things get a little complicated when Julie joins in. Jack calling for a cab to take Julie home with Brautigan's cell phone dials Sol's home and get's Uncle Carl instead. Not waiting for Jack to say anything and thinking that it's Brautigan, his cell phone number came up on the caller I.D, who's calling Carl tells Jack to whack Julie as well as himself. This tips Jack off that the two are not at all interested in Mexican food, which they were supposed to pick up, but are hired by Uncle Carl to put a bullet in his head.
It turns out that Jack's fathers good friend and what seems to be his Guardian Angel Satch, Jonathan Banks, had these two crooked cops, Tony & Lobo, come to Jack's rescue knocking off both Bardbury & Brautigan before they could do Jack in. Later somehow, it's never explained in the movie, they seemed to have knocked off Julie even though she earlier left the car and the two would-be killers never as much as got out of their car seats?
Carl now greatly impressed with Jack ability to keep from getting killed by his hoods plans to get him in his friend's, and co-conspirator, Bruce, Maury Chaykin, "Pleasure Dome" nightclub to talk things over a few drinks. Setting Jack up with a spiked bottle of champaign and a hit-man ,Jeff Bowser, if he felt like staying off the sauce that evening. As usual like everything else in the movie things get screwed up when Helen shows up, dressed all in black, for the party.
Slow and boring movie that has to do with a number of off-the-wall characters who by the time it's over Jack is left dying and Carl and Jack's mother Helen who were supposed to be married are instead to be buried in the now very crowded Lyne family plot.
Believe it or not this is another revised version of Hamlet complete with
the Ghost of his father, a murderous uncle, unfaithful mother, even
Rozenkranz & Guildenstern; also a suicidal girl friend.
I wish it were more coherant, even the Keannu Reeves version was more understandable. a mild thumb down for me only **1/2
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