Saturday, October 30, 2010

II.i. Ophelia Affrighted - Kline '90


It starts with very odd staging, with Polonius basically standing around in the dark and Ophelia coming across him in her pink dress as she runs through the palace. Josef Sommer gives was approaches an anti-performance, standing aloof from her and basically cuing her lines. He's neither cold nor emotional, just expressionless. He seems detached from the scene completely - and I mean the actor, not the character. I can't explain the choice and can't reconcile it with any interesting reading of the play. It's just bizarre, and Ophelia's all-too-old casting doesn't help any. Diane Venora plays it competently, but still seems miscast, and her lack of chemistry with her father here - which isn't her fault - plays against her.

In the end, he listens to her go, prompts her from time to time, never makes accusations (that piece of dialog is cut), and takes off to bring her before the king, never even touching her. It's perfunctory in a way that seems to indicate the director wanted to get through the scene as quickly as possible, seeing it as a simple plot point.

No comments: