By the time he gets Malvolio into the madhouse 4. Viola and other survivors end up on the shore of Illyria. Sir Andrew accepts defeat To sum up, then, I think this is a really fantastic version of this play. As Feste watches Orsino and Cesario almost kiss he knows that Cesario is a woman but his expressive penetrating eyes articulate to the audience the complexity of this scenario because Orsino thinks Cesario is a man. However, there are also some very poignant, touching moments.
A young woman named Viola Imogen Stubbs is washed ashore, but believes her twin brother Sebastian has drowned. The revelations move on with inevitable sureness and yet without haste. As the two trade word play, Viola rises to the occasion, chopping logic like a man, even playing a sight-gag she shares with her brother, a magic trick with a coin. But in this tense context it conveys something more, implying a diagnosis of the moral complications of erotic and artistic pleasure. I could, if I had the time and space, write great long paragraphs on the performances of every actor in this film. Quotations in italics are Nunn's stage directions in the screenplay. Grant Sir Andrew Aguecheek , Nigel Hawthorne Malvolio , Ben Kingsley Feste , Mel Smith Sir Toby Belch , Imelda Staunton Maria , Toby Stephens Orsino , Imogen Stubbs Viola and Stephen Mackintosh Sebastian.
From his coat pocket, he brings out Viola's necklace, discarded on the beach; silently he puts it on her. As the character Feste, he seems to know things that will help to lead the comedy to its resolution - the vulnerability of women, the scariness of homosexual encounter in a patriarchal society, the dangers of repression and the limits of freedom. Things get more complicated in this bittersweet Shakespeare comedy when a moronic nobleman, Sir Andrew Aguecheek, and a self-important servant, Malvolio, get caught up in the schemes of Olivia's uncle, the obese, alcoholic Sir Toby, who leads each to believe Olivia loves him. I thought the set-up of Illyria simultaneously being a military state and an Edenically beautiful place was a nice juxtaposition. So when she arrives she feels that in order to meet Orsino and get close to him she has to develop a disguise.
Viola takes an age to recognize Sebastian; their walking towards each other and their interrogation of their mutual parentage are slow, almost dreamlike. The ritualized act deepens and complicates her re-transformation into woman. The song enacts a lyric conspiracy between Maria and Feste, a polyvocal performance of the difficult path to romantic union. Set in a Hardy-esque English countryside, circa 1890, this starts boldly with a shipwreck and scene-setting voice-over from Kingsley's Feste, whose journeyman troubadour and hedgerow philosopher bestrides the piece like a rustic colossus. In Feste's hands, this sophisticated madrigal enacts a love-death that probes the dangers of love. These characters are all eminently Victorian. The chemistry between Stephens and Stubbs is wonderful, with every scene between them overflowing with sexual tension.
The men are silently aware of the impact of the song - we see Andrew's dimwitted regret and Toby's drunken awareness of love passing him by. The phrase is Eric Brown's 15. But, above all, the choice of period makes clear and powerful the journey Viola has to make. Although one may argue that Twelfth Night contains many features that are typical of romantic comedies, it can be more accurately described as a satire, parodying such conventions. But even as the film evokes the powerful issues of gender identity and repressed sexuality, it pulls away from the tragedy that might lie there: we are not going to enter the world of secrets, lies, or violence. But as he pursues his needling, Feste manoeuvres for a position from which he can confront Olivia more directly.
She meets Feste playing his concertina, and greets him. Nunn follows with their 4. Feste is, like Kingsley himself, a classic man of the theatre, well-seasoned in performance. He sends Cesario to do his wooing, and Olivia falls in love with the disguised maiden. Nunn, however, is not about to break apart the text or go against the grain of a received understanding of the meanings of romantic comedy. Compared to that half-baked misfire, Twelfth Night appears the very model of restraint and professional competency. As a small boy he loved reading but his parents had little money for books.
The Royal Shakespeare Company: The Peter Hall Years. Words: 677 - Pages: 3. We open with some added text, with Feste Ben Kingsley narrating events as the twins perform to the other passengers on the ship, before the ship begins to lurch from side to side being thrown on the waves. It is Feste who allows the audience to see the films respect for the original play, and the existing issues within it. The count sends his new page to stand before Olivia's gate and press his case.
Helena Bonham-Carter had real chemistry with Imogen Stubbs, and instantly fell for Cesario, who had the unique ability to make her smile. New York : Routledge, 1992. Contemporary British and Irish film Directors 2001 , Wallflower Press, , p. When you looked at the promotions for a costume-drama location film like Much Ado about Nothing, with big-time movie names like Denzel Washington, Robert Sean Leonard and Keanu Reaves, you would have known to expect a good time and significant amounts of eye-candy. Orsino moves to stand by Viola; then, taking her hand, he whispers in her ear.
The darkness of the play is palpable on screen. This is a fundamental problem in a comedy. Given that Feste is introduced as an observer of Viola, we are encouraged to speculate on his connection with her, and his interest in the issues facing her: how does a young woman deal with such loss as she has experienced? And yet it's also just a part of a pleasurable little scene between two performers intent on topping one another with their jokes and gags. When Viola was washed up on shore, her intentions were to avoid being caught in a place where was so unfamiliar to her, to grieve with Olivia because she was experiencing the same loss of her brother, to get countess Olivia to return the love the duke had for her and to get to know the duke of whom her father had once spoken. But there is a quality of openness in Nunn's use of the past that works against that narrowing. She looks at Feste, who nods slowly; then she leaves to join Toby.