Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Stand up! Stand up!

King Lear. Dir. Brian Blessed. Perf. Brian Blessed, Hildegard Neil, Jason Riddington, and Phillippa Peak. 1999. DVD. Storm Bird, 2006.

At the request of a reader / viewer, I'm posting a portion of Jason Riddington's Edmund from the Brian Blessed Lear. I'm delighted to do so, because I always hear the speech as a rousing, Saint-Crispin's-Day-esque speech that rallies its audience to a fever pitch—even though it's in favor of the bad guys. Most actors seem skittish with the speech, most so with the "Now, gods, stand up for bastards" conclusion.

Riddington doesn't mind giving the speech some of its full grandeur:

I'm not entirely satisfied with this version—I'd love to have the soundtrack from Kenneth Branagh's Henry V playing in the background, swelling and rolling and moving us to cheer for Edmund during this speech.

Links: The Film at IMDB.

Click below to purchase the film from amazon.com
(and to support Bardfilm as you do so).


No comments:

Bardfilm is normally written as one word, though it can also be found under a search for "Bard Film Blog." Bardfilm is a Shakespeare blog (admittedly, one of many Shakespeare blogs), and it is dedicated to commentary on films (Shakespeare movies, The Shakespeare Movie, Shakespeare on television, Shakespeare at the cinema), plays, and other matter related to Shakespeare (allusions to Shakespeare in pop culture, quotes from Shakespeare in popular culture, quotations that come from Shakespeare, et cetera).

Unless otherwise indicated, quotations from Shakespeare's works are from the following edition:
Shakespeare, William. The Riverside Shakespeare. 2nd ed. Gen. ed. G. Blakemore Evans. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1997.
All material original to this blog is copyrighted: Copyright 2008-2039 (and into perpetuity thereafter) by Keith Jones.

The very instant that I saw you did / My heart fly to your service; there resides, / To make me slave to it; and, for your sake, / Am I this patient [b]log-man.

—The Tempest