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Hamlet Media Assignment

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Hamlet Media Assignment The film of Hamlet has become one of Shakespeare's most famous works. Many different directors have each given their own interpretation of Hamlet. We have looked at three different film versions. Kenneth Brannagh, Lawrence Olivier and Franco Zefirelli. The part of the play I am going to look at is Hamlets monologue; "To be, or not to be" I have chosen this monologue because it is the section of the play which most people remember. It is also a very strong powerful monologue. This speech is important to the play because Hamlet is asking the one question that many people ask...why should I carry on living in this disrupted, sinful world? This makes it an important scene to the audience. Hamlet follows his argument through talking about the bad things in the world, but he moves on to talk about life after death. He finally persuades himself against the idea of suicide. I will look at the different methods used by the directors to create their desired impact on this scene. In the Franco Zefirelli version (1990) of Hamlet this scene is set in a crypt in the cellars of Elsinore Castle. ...read more.


We the see a door open revealing that the mirror Hamlet is looking into is a two way mirror. The way Hamlet speaks is very static and quiet. He is stood in a very rigid, upright position. The first time he moves is in the lines: "Or to take arms against a sea of troubles" In this line he raises his arm. He then moves closer to the mirror and we get a clearer picture of the room he is in. This is because the camera moves to allow a wider angle. This lets the mirror reflect the other doors, windows and other mirrors in the room. In the lines: "With a bare bodkin: who would fardels bear," Hamlet draws his dagger and points it at the reflection of himself in the mirror. There is then a quick cut to Claudius looking alarmed in the other room. This is shown because the other characters can see Hamlet through the mirror. This shot allows the audience to see how the other characters have reacted to Hamlets actions. After this section we hear faint music in the background with a muted drum performing a drum roll on the timpani drums. ...read more.


All the movements fit well with the speech and the lighting and camera effects add to the dramatic impact of the scene. The mis´┐Ż en scene in this scene is very well chosen. Hamlet is in the Crypt of the castle and this makes the scene seem more realistic than the other two versions. The Lawrence Olivier and Kenneth Brannagh films do not have as bigger impact on the audience. This is because they are set in brightly lit places, this speech is about death, the audience relate dark rooms to death more than they do a well lit area. If I were to create this scene using the ideas from these directors I would use the music from the Olivier version as it adds a greater sense of unclear thoughts and mixed emotions. I would set the scene in a dark area as the speech has a content which is 'dark' and evil. The lighting I would use would be minimal as the room/area needs to be dark, but Hamlets face would need to be emphasised to show his facial expression. The actor would move as in the Zefirelli version as I feel this adds the most dramatic effect to the scene. The actor would speak the scene with feeling like in the Olivier version as I think this adds more emphasis on certain important words in the speech. I ...read more.

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