Thursday, November 20, 2008

Branagh vs. Gibson


Which film production is better? How are they different/similar?

17 comments:

Mr. Plainview said...

The picture is of Laurence Olivier, who played Hamlet in the 1948 film production. He also directed the flick. It won four oscars, including Best Picture and Best Actor. Yeah...
Branagh is a much more talented actor than Gibson. He is a Shakespearean actor, mind you. Gibson is by all means successful, though. People sat through four Lethal Weapon films...
While I'm at it, I might point out this connection between Olivier and Branagh. Olivier was nominated for Best Actor in Sleuth (1972) along with Michael Caine (who happens to be my favorite actor). Just last year, Kenneth Branagh directed the remake of Sleuth with Michael Caine and Jude Law.
Just thought I'd point that out. The original Sleuth happens to be my favorite movie, and Kenneth Branagh happens to be one of my favorite actors.

tmichals said...

Being completely honest, I didn't really like either of the actors playing Hamlet. I pictured him to be a much younger character than both actors portrayed. I think stm should do the play... Joel can be Hamlet.

JP said...

I like Branagh better as Hamlet, but like I think Ms. Scandurro said the thing about Shakespeare is that there are so many different ways to interpret it because of the versatility of the language, lack of stage directions, etc. So I don't think any single rendition of Shakespeare can necessarily be considered the "best."

Ehren said...

I though Gibson was better, actually. I thought he had certain mannerisms and expresisons that made his acting seem more natural. Maybe I liked Gibson better because his acting seemed less Shakespearian and more contemporary.

Mr. Plainview said...

Yeah, well again, Branagh's is basically a play on film. I mean, Gibson uses Shakespeare's lines, but Branagh's doesn't cut a single word. Maybe I'm just biased because I like some of the other things Branagh has done. But Laurence Olivier had it nailed. Although he was forty-one at the time, the black and white film seems to hide his age.

ndepass said...

I like Gibson much better! He actually seemed crazy, much more so than Branagh. He just seemed more believable to me, maybe because hes a hollywood actor he was able to make his performance more entertaining. I just think he was able to capture my attention more and keep me paying attention and awake.

Mr. Plainview said...

But what about Hamlet kissing Gertrude? Did you enjoy that? At least Branagh managed a sensual flashback with Ophelia.

ndepass said...

I did not enjoy Hamlet kissing Gertrude! i thought that was definitely something wrong the Gibson version because that was kind of ridiculous and not necessary for the film. However, i still think Gibson was the superior Hamlet.

El Paco said...

Gibson didn't do the soliloquies very well - and that's what Shakespeare's all about. I liked Gibson's crazy scenes, but overall I thought BRanagh was better

JP said...

I thought it was really interesting how differently the line "Words, words, words!" was interpreted by the two films.

In the Gibson version, when Polonius asks him "What do you read?" Hamlet flips through his book and says very matter-of-factly, "Words... words... hmm. Words."

In contrast, in the Branagh version Hamlet flips through the book, says "Words... words..." then he makes a ridiculous contorted face kind of like one of these, or perhaps like all of them in rapid succession - http://www.rabittooth.com/13_calvin/faces.jpg - and goes "WOOEARUERUDS!!!11"

I thought maybe the restrained and purposely unhelpful, "method-in-the-madness" style of Gibson was probably a little closer to what Shakespeare had envisioned... but I still liked Branagh's version way better.

Calvin probably would've liked Branagh's version better too.

JP said...

Ahahahaha, I found it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_qRvheXEYk

Skip to 1:15.

bballinsupasta said...

i liked the gibson version better than the other one. he actually seemed crazy. the other actor was too old and dry. i still do not think that the kiss in gibson's was necessary.

Aaron Nussdorf said...

I think that Branagh is a better actor overall; even though Gibson is basically the same character for every movie, Gibson seemed to be a better Hamlet.

Dean Elazab said...

I like the Gibson more than the Branagh just for the style of the period. Im not a fan of the contemporary form that the Branagh took.

stephen said...

I think that Gibson's version certainly goes beyond the play in some of its interprestations such as Hamlet kissing Gertrude, which is not implied at all in the play. It created a great dramatic effect but one that was not intended by shakespeare

Mr. Plainview said...

I will say I think Billy Crystal is delightful in the grave scene. He brings a fun sarcasm to the character. Yet his performance is not just comical; it maintains the clear, smooth pronunciation of a Shakespearean actor.

Manal said...

I did not like the faces Hamlet made in the Branagh version especially in the scene John mentioned with the "words". That just seemed childish and not very crazy. Gibson's version was easier to watch and enjoy, but the interpretation definately went a little too far.