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How novel! A Monday round-up — on a Tuesday.


by Jerome Weeks 19 Feb 2008

Searching for the perfect Hamlet. Personally, I haven’t found a perfect Hamlet — and I’ve seen Laurence Olivier, Ralph Fiennes, Richard Burton, Derek Jacobi, Kenneth Branagh, Kevin Kline, Mel Gibson (one of the more underrated), Zeljko Ivanek (at the Guthrie), Maximillian Schell (in a hilarious German version available through Mystery Science Theatre 3000), Ethan Hawke […]

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Hamlet — from the Chekhov International Theatre Festival

  • Searching for the perfect Hamlet. Personally, I haven’t found a perfect Hamlet — and I’ve seen Laurence Olivier, Ralph Fiennes, Richard Burton, Derek Jacobi, Kenneth Branagh, Kevin Kline, Mel Gibson (one of the more underrated), Zeljko Ivanek (at the Guthrie), Maximillian Schell (in a hilarious German version available through Mystery Science Theatre 3000), Ethan Hawke (one of the more overrated), Campbell Scott (not bad at all), Adrian Lester (in director Peter Brook’s highly unusual version), plus half-a-dozen local stage princes. FYI: The finest film version of the entire play is the Russian by Grigori Kozintsev, which only recently became availabe in the West on DVD.
  • Will the Trans-Texas Corridor — the new super-toll road being planned to run through the state —threaten the empty vistas of Marfa, where Donald Judd’s sculptures reside?
  • Hollywood has always used novels as source material — and then often forgotten to acknowledge the original author, which is just as well, considering how often the source got butchered. But lately, the studios have actually gotten better, it seems, at adapting literature to the screen.
  • “As far as art history is concerned, it was like mixing ammonia, nitrate and a match — when Marcel Duchamp, Francis Picabia and Man Ray all met.” See a London Times article and video about the new Tate Modern exhibition on the great Dadaist trio.
  • At 247,600 square feet, Paris’ Cite de l’Architecture et du Patronoime is the largest museum of architecture in the world. Opened in September by President Sarkozy, it’s his first project in reviving French architecture and in making culture accessible to the masses. 
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