4 July 2016

Prince of Jutland

Prince of Jutland 1994
  • Director: Gabriel Axel
  • Based on the original source of Shakespeare’s Hamlet written in the 12th century by Saxo Grammaticus
  • Cast: Gabriel Byrne, Christian Bale, Helen Mirren, Brian Cox, Kate Beckinsale, Tony Haygarth, Tom Wilkinson, Mark Williams, Andy Serkis
  • Personal “oh yeah him/her” reaction, i.e. have seen this actor in:
o   Gabriel Byrne – Quirke, Emotional Arithmetic, Jindabyne, Wah-Wah, Smilla’s Sense of Snow, Dead Man, Little Women, Miller’s Crossing, Gothic, Excalibur
o   Christian Bale - Public Enemies, I’m Not There, Terminator Salvation, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman Begins, The Prestige, Equilibrium, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Velvet Goldmine, Little Women, Swing Kids, Henry V
o   Helen Mirren – The Hundred Foot Journey, Brighton Rock, The Tempest, The Queen, Calendar Girls, Gosford Park, The Pledge, Some Mother’s Son, Prime Suspect, The Madness of King George, Mosquito Coast, Cymbeline, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Excalibur, As You Like It, O Lucky Man
o   Brian Cox – The Slap, Coriolanus, Zodiac, Troy, Adaption, The Bourne Identity, Longitude, Rushmore, Long Kiss Goodnight, Braveheart, Rob Roy, King Lear
o   Kate Beckinsale – The Aviator, Serendipity, The Last Days of Disco, Shooting Fish, Cold Comfort Farm, Much Ado about Nothing
o   Tony Haygarth – Gracie, Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky, Clockwise, Two Gentlemen of Verona, Holocaust, I Claudius
o   Tom Wilkinson – Hotel Marigold, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Girl with the Pearl Earring, Shakespeare in Love, Smilla’s Sense of Snow
o   Mark Williams -  Hustle, Harry Potter 1-8, Merlin, Stardust, Tristram Shandy, Shackleton, Whatever Happened to Harold Smith, Shakespeare in Love
o   Andy Serkis – Star Wars the Force Awakens, The Hobbit/Lord of the Rings, Brighton Rock, The Prestige, King Kong, 24 Hour Party People, Topsy-Turvy, Career Girls
  • ·       Why? Hamlet connection
  • Seen:  2 July 2016
       We’re now reading Hamlet again and soon we’ll dive into the pile of DVD versions on the Shakespeare shelf. But first this yet unseen spin-off. Or spin-back, one might say. This is based on the original legend by Saxo Grammaticus, written in the 12th century from whence Shakespeare borrowed the character and story.
       A good cast bodes well.
       In the small rustic kingdom of Jutland Fenge murders his brother the king. The king’s eldest son witnesses the murder and goes mad so is unable to reveal what he has seen. Fenge becomes king and weds the widowed queen, his sister-in-law. And wonders – is the prince really mad?
       The ponies are endearing and the horses are fine but the film is awful.  What are these great actors doing in this boring, amateurish, Viking soap opera loser?  Oh, Shakespeare, we need you!

1 ¾ * of 5

For more on Shakespeare see my book Shakespeare Calling – the book

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