Sunday, June 22, 2014

Movies by year: 1990

(Be warned: spoilers ahead)

In 1990 I moved away from home and off to school - and there were some notable movies that year too. Kevin Costner finally became a big deal in Dances With Wolves. Ron Silver made us wonder whether Claus von B├╝low was really innocent or guilty in Reversal Of Fortune. Sean Connery was Scottish again as a Russian in The Hunt For Red October. Johnny Depp made all the girls cry (and a little boy sitting behind us in the theatre exclaimed, 'but he didn't do anything!') in Edward Scissorhands. Quade had a really bad day in Total Recall. And David Lynch gave us Wild At Heart, which is definitely not a date movie. And one more really interesting piece of film:

Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead


So you're familiar with Hamlet, right? R&G are two side characters, friends of Hamlet, who are called upon by his mother to make sense of his madness. But this isn't Hamlet's story, it's theirs.

We meet them on the road, on the way to Elsinore. They ponder reality, flip a coin continuously, meet some actors - and then suddenly they're at the castle, and part of Hamlet. Anywhere they overlap with the play we get the actual play, and whenever they leave the scene, we leave with them. They spend the rest of the time wandering around, trying to figure out what it's all about and what they can do. Of course, if you are familiar with it, you know how it has to end for them.

Gary Oldman and Tim Roth give amazing performances, and this was my introduction to Iain Glen as The Dane (you may know him as Ser Jorah Mormont). Richard Dreyfus rounds out the cast as the lead player of the actors.

If you're feeling at all insecure about your place in the universe, you may want to avoid this one - but otherwise I highly recommend it, if only for the antics of the two leads.

Have you seen it? What did you think?

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