Mere hours ago the world got its first look at the latest feature film to be adapted from Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Macbeth. And oh what a first look it was…
That’s right, peel your eyes away from that murderous gaze and you’ll find that it belongs to none other than the current Hollywood darling Michael Fassbender. Chills… I have chills! I know what you’re thinking: he seems to be saying,
I am in blood
Stepp’d in so far that, should I wade no more,
Returning were as tedious as go o’er
Right? (By the way, you can find the explanation for that quote here.)
And if Fassbender gives you goosebumps in this poster, just wait til you find out who’s playing Lady M…
For a brief week, the Seattle International Film Festival was able to bring Manchester International Festival’s production of Macbeth to the Uptown Theater in Seattle. As a part of a series called National Theater Live (which includes Othello with Adrian Lester and Frankenstein with Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller), this production stars the illustrious Kenneth Branagh as the titular Scottish King. I was lucky enough to get tickets to see this thunderous play.
Co-directed by Branagh and Rob Ashford, the production was spectral, but appropriately stark. A lot of the eerie desolation came from the fact that it takes place in a deconsecrated Manchester church. The floors of the church were ripped out, so the stage was a pit of austere earth across which the witches skulked and the Scottish thanes clashed bloodily. Rain was poured unsparingly onto the actors. The dim lighting was the perfect harshness for this sinister play.
Perhaps the reason the Virgin Queen decided to remain so is to avoid the humiliation of having one of her upstart subjects oil paint a picture of her swaddling cat in her arms….
Maybe someday there will be superstitions that arise from the era when Queen Kate and King William reign, but it is unlikely that they will be as elaborate or as colorful as these. The folks over at The Oddment Emporium recently posted this list from an elderly nobleman known here only as “Sir Cecil” who reflected on the superstitions that arose during the era of the Maiden Queen, Elizabeth the First.
“During the era of my youth,” Sir Cecil recalled, “it was most important these be followed at all times.”