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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: December ::
Re: Baz Luhrmann Review
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.2425  Tuesday, 17 December 2002

[1]     From:   Mike Jensen <
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        Date:   Thursday, 12 Dec 2002 10:20:56 -0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.2408 Re: Baz Luhrmann Review

[2]     From:   Walter Miale <
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        Date:   Friday, 13 Dec 2002 13:13:40 -0500
        Subj:   Unfit for Teens (was Re: Baz Luhrmann Review)

[3]     From:   Steve Roth <
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        Date:   Monday, 16 Dec 2002 11:08:45 -0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.2408 Re: Baz Luhrmann Review


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mike Jensen <
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Date:           Thursday, 12 Dec 2002 10:20:56 -0800
Subject: 13.2408 Re: Baz Luhrmann Review
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.2408 Re: Baz Luhrmann Review

I planned to say out of this until I read Ted Dykstra's unfair message.
I have seen Luhrmann's *La Boheme* and I didn't like it.

I frankly can't get interested enough in it or Mr. Luhrmann's other work
to give a lengthy list of reasons why I feel as I do.  Some are not
Luhrmann's fault, such as the fact that I am virtually alone in feeling
the opera vastly overrated.  Another class of problem is that Luhrmann's
works leave me cold.  His sensibility and mine are not in sync.  (I
should confess that I could only take about 20 minutes of his high camp
*Moulin Rouge* and bailed out, so one can argue I did not give that one
a fair chance.)  Even so, I thought the conceits he brought to *La B*
extremely distracting, that some of the updates did not work, and that
he winked at the audience way too much.  Most who have written about the
production think I am wrong.

Those working on Mr. Luhrmann's *R+J* will probably find some things to
think about when the compare it to *LB*.  I do think that is worth
noting.  One can indeed see Luhrmann's *LB* and dislike it.

All the best,
Mike Jensen

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Walter Miale <
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 >
Date:           Friday, 13 Dec 2002 13:13:40 -0500
Subject:        Unfit for Teens (was Re: Baz Luhrmann Review)

>These posts remind me of the gentleman who thought teens could not
>possibly comprehend Shakespeare, when really, it was he who couldn't
>understand teens.

Well, teenagers should not be permitted to read Shakespeare
unexpurgated, for example Romeo and Juliet, publication or performance
of which, under current statutes, is I suspect actually illegal in the
United States. In this play you've got steamy pubescent sexuality with
the initiation of a girl who has quite possibly not reached menarche;
morbid depression; homicidal gang violence; and teen suicide. And with
no cross dressing or occultism or psychopathology or derangement or
misogyny or anti-Semitism or serial murder or cannibalism in it, this is
hardly the least wholesome or the goriest of Shakespeare's plays. (OK,
I'm just kidding.)

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Steve Roth <
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Date:           Monday, 16 Dec 2002 11:08:45 -0800
Subject: 13.2408 Re: Baz Luhrmann Review
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.2408 Re: Baz Luhrmann Review

After biting my electric tongue for several days, I can't resist
pitching in defense of Luhrmann.

Whether his R&J good or bad Shakespeare I won't venture to assert. I
will say that it's some of the most spectacular filmmaking I've ever
seen. His sheer prowess and power as a director is, to me,
awe-inspiring. When my wife and I first saw the film, she came out
barely able to walk because it was so powerful. I was haunted by it for
days, and I've seen it several times since, always getting more.

I think Luhrman may be the next great director--on a par with Kubrick
and his ilk. It remains to be seen--once he goes beyond the "red
slipper" period with which is how he describes his first three
films--whether he has the diversity that Kubrick had. He's purportedly
at work on an Alexander the Great epic with Di Caprio and Delaurentis.
I'll be first in line to see it, and I'm flying to New York in February
to see La Boheme.

Steve
http://princehamlet.com

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