has anyone done a hamlet where hamlet wrests the cup from horatio and finishes off the last of the poisoned drink, and then horatio proceeds to lunge after him and try to kiss the poison from his mouth
oh god I was almost crying and then I thought
what if hamlet then stops horatio from kissing him because he’s scared that there would be a chance horatio could poison himself that way
so he like pushes horatio away and horatio just looks really hurt and hamlet feels awful about it but he won’t let horatio die
now I am crying
HAMLET JUST SHOVES HIS HAND OVER HIS MOUTH
HORATIO SOBS AND, DISTRAUGHT, KISSES HAMLET’S PALM BETWEEN THEM
and this time he isn’t chasing the poison at all, this time it’s all about final shows of affection because in 20 lines hamlet’s going to be dEAd
I HATE YOU
Leslie Howard’s Hamlet, 1936
Y’ALL CHECK OUT THIS APP I FOUND
So it’s called Clean Slate: Hamlet and it’s like an interactive narration/progressive quiz that goes through all the acts of Hamlet in order. It apparently connects to twitter and you can tweet opinions about what Hamlet should do based on what you know.
I looked for this with a few other plays but haven’t found anything yet. The teacher in me is happy but also the Hamlet fangirl in me is happy.
Leslie Howard in Hamlet, 1936
I just finished listening to Hamlet, Prince of Denmark: A Novel, written by A. J. Hartley and David Hewson, and narrated by Richard Armitage. It’s surprisingly well-written and, of course, magnificently performed by Armitage.
You’d think that Hamlet would be done to death by now, but these writers managed to bring something fresh and very engaging to the table. Hamlet, although definitely still a brooding character, feels a lot less like a navel-gazer and a lot more like a caged lion, brooding only because he has not yet figured out how to sink his teeth into his prey. Every character is well-drawn, including the clever new device of expanding Yorick into a main character with often-hilarious, biting dialogue. By the time the final scene occurred, bathed in blood as usual, I was twisted up inside with all of the individual characters’ desperations and I could see the whole thing happening not as some giant farcical tragedy but as a set of unavoidable forces all crashing into each other, each person hurting inside and out.
Armitage’s beautiful voice and excellent acting can redeem even a story as tedious as A Convenient Marriage, but thankfully he had such good subject matter to work with here that the dark richness of his natural tone is the perfect means to convey the inner workings of an ancient castle and the simmering hatred of a wronged prince. Armitage slipped easily from accent to accent, high-born and low-born, native and foreigner, male and female, comic and tragic, old and young. It was often easy to forget that one man was speaking all the lines, and instead I saw a young woman or an old lord in my mind’s eye without the slightest effort.
If you haven’t listened to this audiobook—even if you normally don’t listen to audiobooks—you should go listen to this one.
Hamlet, Prince of Denmark: A Novel is well worth your time.
HEY SHAKESPEARE FANS
Vishal Bhardwaj, the director responsible for my favorite Shakespeare modernization ever, has finished his version of Hamlet and it is coming out soon!
(click the CC for Engish subtitles)
As is always the case with adaptations—modernizations in particular—Bhardwaj’s films pick and choose which themes/characters to emphasize, so YMMV if you have feelings about the source text. For example, I thought the changes worked SPLENDIDLY in Omkara; that film incorporates all of Othello's plot-relevant characters, and in many cases gives them more development. Meanwhile, I found Maqbool disappointing because the aspects of Macbeth that I find most compelling were very much not what the film wanted to focus on.
Going by the trailer, Haider changes quite a bit about Ophelia’s role, and it is probably not the film for you if Horatio is your very favorite. I’d wager it’s Hamlet the way last year’s Ram-Leela (by a different director, Sanjay Leela Bhansali) is Romeo and Juliet. But Bhardwaj’s movies are always fantastic, so it’ll be worth watching for sure.