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Compare and Contrast the Three Video Versions of Macbeth, Act 1 Scene 7

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Compare and Contrast the Three Video Versions of Macbeth, Act 1 Scene 7 The first video version that I am observing, out of the three versions, is a production starring John Gordon Sinclair as Macbeth and Louise Lombard as Lady Macbeth. This video appears to be modern for the time in which the story is set. The second video production I am looking at is a production by the BBC. It was created to celebrate the anniversary of William Shakespeare. It stars Nicol Williamson as Macbeth and Jane Lapotaire as Lady Macbeth. The purpose of the video was purely to create a video version of the whole of Shakespeare's play. The third video production I would be looking at has John Finch acting as Macbeth and Francessca Annis playing the part of Lady Macbeth. This production was directed by a man named Palinski and its purpose to create a motion picture of the play "Macbeth". This was created to enhance the experience of Shakespeare's play, thus, some new scenes and new stage direction have been added. Before Act 1 Scene 7, Macbeth is told by three witches that he will, firstly become Thane of Cawdor and then the King. He has become the Thane of Cawdor so now has his eyes on the Throne and he discovers that there is only one possible way he could become King. He must kill the king. However, as we discover in scene 7 he is having doubts that he will carry out the deed. At one point he decides not to do it but he is egged on by his wife, who almost takes control other Macbeth completely. ...read more.


This again, retains the audiences' interest. The Polanski version also features grand external shots of the castle. These make up the variation of lighting for these are very dark. This, again, keeps the audience interested whereas, watching the other versions; the audience may be lost in the constant flow of speech. All this, is expected of a feature film. The sound in the modern version consists of a lot of background noise; it is not enough, though, to divert the audience away from the dialogue. The background consists of noise from the main banquet, some form of machinery, loud footsteps and laughter. The background noise is mostly sound effects, these effects echo for effect. The laughter is loud, disembodied and has a small evil twist which may reflect the evilness of Macbeth's and Lady Macbeth's plans for the king, a sinister feel is provided. There are also drum beats, which may have come from the banquet, used for effect. All of the noise adds to the feeling that things are not right, the echoing aids this also. In the BBC version the sound is very quiet. There is some introductory sound from the banquet which helps set the scene. The first version has noise from the banquet all through the speech even if it is only laughter and sound effects. When Macbeth is contemplating what he is going to do, he speaks in whispers not in words like the modern version. This may be due to the fact that he is talking to himself. When Lady Macbeth enters there is a loud, sharp sound which is used to symbolise that Macbeth has been interrupted and disturbed. ...read more.


I also feel that Macbeth's speech being in the form of a voice over was a lot more effective than him simply talking to himself which is used in the other versions. It is also a lot more believable. There were also, a lot more actors in this version, they may only be extras, but it adds more realism to the story and enhances it for the audience. The set of the scene moves from Macbeth being in the banquet to outside of it, and then back in it. None of the other versions do this and it enhances the play. The audience is less likely to become tired of varying sets than they are of one set. I think that the BBC version was the least effective, because it relied mostly on the quality of the play itself, the language and the acting of the actors. It was also too plain, there was, at times, no variation in sound and the camera angles were static which became tiresome. It is however useful for studies of the play because it shows the plain language and the story of the play clearly. I do not think it was designed to entertain any more than the play itself was. The modern version was particularly effective in the chosen lighting. The flashes of red light symbolising the idea that blood will be shed was very effective in my opinion. The avenue of blue lights giving an eerie effect was well executed also. It was too futuristic though, for me personally to enjoy as much as the Palinski version. The lighting, clothing and the loud mechanical sounds featured in scene 7 were too futuristic, they were unrealistic. Steven Moors 10s - 1 - ...read more.

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