Thursday, February 4, 2010

Shakespeare in the New(er) West

Tombstone. Dir. George P. Cosmatos. Perf. Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer. 1993. DVD. Walt Disney Video, 1997.
I suppose there's something about Wyatt Earp that makes a Shakespearean presentation in Tombstone inevitable.

In the 1993 film Tombstone, we are taken to the Bird Cage Theatre (the theatre we almost got to in My Darling Clementine— for which, q.v.). But we don't get Hamlet this time. Instead, Henry V is on the bill:

video

In My Darling Clementine, the soliloquy from and allusions to Hamlet seem to underline deeper considerations. In Tombstone, the scene seems almost obligatory—or, at best, to have a meaning nearer to the surface. Could the shootout at the O.K. Corral be considered Wyatt Earp's Agincourt?

Still, it's Shakespeare, and we're all ready to cry "More Shakespeare!" whenever possible.
Links: The Film at IMDB.

Click below to purchase the film from amazon.com
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1 comment:

Sam Wood said...

Thanks so much for a wonderful blog. I shall certainly be coming back. I loved the South Park one, but alas, cannot help the PhD candidates with the original language. Full episodes are not available in Paris. Boo!

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 2008-2012 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