Friday, January 02, 2009
No Doubt About One Thing... Filming Plays: Good
...filming cheesy old TV series: Bad. Long ago and far away, in Hollywood's early days, the theater was a steady source of material for the silver screen. Yes, they are two different media, but film is indeed capable of theater's immediacy and catharsis, albeit with different tools. They key is to 'open up' a play with real physical setting and, if needed, period detail, without losing the intensity of the core story...
"Doubt" has pulled this off, I am happy to report. Unlike many friends & family, I never got to see the play. But I emerged from the theater brimming to exhaustion with the riches of this dramatic banquet. So many good questions asked, it's not a black or white, true or not mystery, but the ambiguities here are a rich palate of grey... This "Doubt" offers script and performances that are razor-sharp, riveting, and utterly authentic. Meryl Streep's harsh, punitive nun is as complex as it is scary as it is hilarious. Philip Seymour Hoffman delivers perhaps his strongest performance to date - could this be the same man who did 'Capote'? Both Amy Adams and Viola Wills are unforgettable, the latter despite only 5 minutes of screen time.
All I can do is plea for more theatrical riches to make the great crossing.... You've all seen the trailer, so I've chosen some rarer video content..
Here's a rare montage of clips from Doubt - The Play...
Here's the movie cast dicussing the play on a panel with Larry Kasdan..
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