FBMR - Hamlet
Film-Buff Movie Reviews


HAMLET (2000) **1/2

Here is yet another film adaptation of a Shakespeare play. This one, however, is set in present-day New York City, but keeps the original text. Unlike Kenneth Branaghís version of this play, much has been cut from the text. One of the biggest disappointments was the exclusion of the gravediggerís scene. Itís one of the few light-hearted moments of the play, and itís fun because itís so different from the rest of whatís going on.

I found this film a little too slow for my taste, and a little too stark; I found the whole movie too gray, sets, costumes, all were too black or white or gray. One touch I really liked was that whenever beer was consumed, they drank Carlsberg, the beer of Denmark.

The performances were fine, but seemed very subdued, I found myself watch just a bunch of talking heads most of the time. For certain movies it works well, but for me, it kept me from getting close to the characters. The only one I felt for was Ophelia (Julia Stiles). Ethan Hawke, as the doleful Hamlet, brought a very interesting interpretation of the character to the screen, but with the exception of the scenes where he sees and speaks to his Ghost-Father, I would have liked to have seen more emotion.

IMDb - Hamlet