Denzel Washington is in charge in Joel Coen’s Bloody, Bold, and Uncompromising “Tragedy of Macbeth”

With whispering witches, thick fog and crows flying around, Joel Coen“The Tragedy of Macbeth” has a very varied atmosphere. This moody movie, which hits theaters on Christmas Day and on Apple TV+ January 14, is also heavy with shadows, endless stairs and hallways, and billowing curtains. Shot on the Los Angeles soundstage and lensed in brilliant black and white, the film has an appropriately cool and seductive look. Furthermore, this screen adaptation of Shakespeare perfectly acted by the entire cast, all handled five-word verse Poetry iambus with remarkable aplomb.

The story is one of great ambitions like Macbeth (a famous American actor) and Banquo (Bertie Carvel) are returning from battle to save King Duncan of Scotland (Brendan Gleeson) by fighting his enemies. Along the way, they encounter three witches (Kathryn Hunter in multiple roles) who tell Macbeth he will be king. But when he is promoted to Thane of Cawdor, and Malcolm (Harry Melling) is named next to the throne, Macbeth feels shunned. ONE Game of thrones begins when Macbeth plans to depose the king and fulfill the prophecy of the witches.

Macbeth’s desire for power, as anyone familiar with the play knows, was more than shared by his wife, Lady Macbeth (Frances McDormand). She lures him to kill the king, who will be with them that night. Macbeth was a bit hesitant at first, but he “made the action,” and Coen effectively shot the murder scene, in a tight close-up with a bloodstain.

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Coen uses the economy of storytelling, which is why the film has such a strong appeal. “Macbeth” is Shakespeare’s shortest tragedy, and the filmmaker turns it into a fleeting experience that pulls the viewer along as the drama increases and the body count increases. Yes, there are questions asked including “Unsex me here,” and “Out, damned spot!” via Lady Macbeth, and “No more sleep“by Macbeth, there’s space and time to breathe, but the film never becomes bulky or contrived.

When the King was dispatched, Macbeth attempted to bring the situation under control, killing two guards he had charged with murder. This act gives him strength, but it also causes him to have a crisis of conscience and he quickly descends into madness. However, Macbeth arranges for Banquo and his son Fleance (Lucas Barker) to be killed and orders the murder of Macduff’s wife (Corey Hawkins) and children (Moses Ingram), a rather haunting scene.

“The Tragedy of Macbeth” is impressive because it is so visually impressive. A photograph of what looks like the moon in the night sky turning into a bright spot. The aerial view of a courtyard dissolves into a frame around a cottage in the countryside. Macbeth sees a ghost in a puddle he holds in his hand; The apparition dissipated when he regained consciousness. Coen uses a variety of visual effects – from leaves rushing through a window to crows flying across the screen at a crucial moment – to create a real impact, which is why This product is brilliant.

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Furthermore, the cinematography by Bruno Delbonnel and scores by Carter Burwell, both frequent Coen Brothers collaborators, contribute to the strength of the film. Minimalist sets and chiaroscuro lighting highlight the themes and forces of good and evil. A fight scene in a narrow aisle is particularly thrilling and engaging. Oddly enough, while “The Tragedy of Macbeth” was staged, it was never really a downside. In fact, the sparse presentation – and the film shot at 1:33 aspect ratio to square the frame and tighten the picture – is what makes it so urgent and compelling.

Washington, who last played Shakespeare on screen in 1993’s “Much Ado About Nothing,” is brilliant in the lead role, embodying Macbeth’s fears while also making his madness believable. trust. His speeches and body language are commanding as he realizes all his guilt and tyranny. As the evil and cunning Lady Macbeth, Frances McDormand is a revelator. The actress rarely plays evil on screen, but she tackles this important role with gusto, encouraged by the power she desires.

As for the support, Kathryn Hunter is particularly memorable in her morphing performances as the witch as well as the masked old man Fleance. (Hunter should play Gollum next time”Lord of the Rings. “) She’s mesmerized from the very first scene, with her hoarse voice and contorted body, but she’s also charming when seen double reflection in a body of water.

Although they have the least screen time in the film, both Moses Ingram as Lady Macduff and Stephen Root as a porter, work well together as the actors bring so much energy and spirit to their roles. .

“Macbeth’s Tragedy” may not have the wit of a typical Coen Brothers movie, but it’s still pretty awesome.

“The Tragedy of Macbeth” hits theaters on December 25 and streams on Apple TV+ on January 14. Watch the movie trailer below, via YouTube:

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https://www.salon.com/2021/12/25/tragedy-of-macbeth-review/ Denzel Washington is in charge in Joel Coen’s Bloody, Bold, and Uncompromising “Tragedy of Macbeth”

Huynh Nguyen

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