Monday, June 25, 2018


I haven't seen enough of Kenneth Branaugh's films to make sweeping generalizations -- but, on the other hand, this is my blog and nobody can call me to account. So... he's an empty suit. His Hamlet was godawful, Oscar-worthy posturing without an idea in its pretty little head. His Much Ado was almost saved by Emma Thompson (though Keanu Reeves's Don John was a true joke). I didn't see Love's Labour's Lost, and I don't remember his Henry V -- but neither of those plays matter much, so who cared if he was inadequate to them?

On the other hand, I just watched half of his As You Like It, which is a mess. I wouldn't mind that he set it in 19th century Japan if that were even slightly expressive, but it isn't. The whole thing is directed with so little interest that it feels as though every scene we watch was the first and only take -- and without any live--performance energy or discovery. Kevin Kline's Jacques isn't melancholy, he's just bored. The whole thing is unwatchable.

The idea that Sir Kenneth played actual Laurence Olivier in a film is some kind of meta-travesty.

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