Brooks (brooksmoses) wrote,

Much Ado About Nothing

As suzanne noted, Joss Whedon's Much Ado About Nothing is playing at the Aquarius in Palo Alto, and we went off to see it this afternoon. They've only got showtimes listed on the website through the 20th, and something else is starting on the 21st (though they do have two theatres, so that may not be conclusive), so if you want to see it it may be prudent to see it soon.

Also, you do want to see it.

It is a really good adaptation. The acting is really great, which is fun with the fact that it's using the original text; there are lots of places with reactions and unspoken communication -- and it's fun watching how they interplay with the verbal lines. The visual humor of the parts where Benedict and Beatrice are eavesdropping on conversations for their benefit are really well done, especially Beatrice's.

The other thing that's great about the acting is that ... well, there are some bits of the play that are a bit hard to sell as being something that real people would do. I am admittedly not the best person to judge, but to me they really did sell most of them; Claudio's flip-flopping of emotions between love and jealousy in particular.

I was also quite taken with the choice to do this in black-and-white, despite the modern-day setting. It added a layer of anachronism to the visual setting that seemed to balance the anachronism of the language, with the result that they both seemed part of the whole rather than the language just seeming weird. Likewise, in some of the parts where the text devolves into almost absurdist humor, there's visual humor to go along with it. (Nathan Fillion putting on his sunglasses had me laughing out loud, which is rather an unexpected thing to say out of context. Also there were altogether way too many shoulder holsters in that scene, which was entirely appropriate.)

Also, Joss had a whole movie and didn't kill off a beloved character. Which is also rather remarkable.

So, yeah. Go see it.

Crossposted from Dreamwidth (original here), with comment count unavailable comments. Comment here or there; comments here will eventually be duplicated to there.
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