The hollow crown: Richard III full movie review - This time I really loved it
Excellent adaptation of Richard III with Benedict Cumberbatch in the title role.
Having seen the previous episode of the Hollow Crown (Henry VI part 2) and disliked it very much, I had to steel myself to be able to put behind in my mind the haunting images endured in HVI-2.
But the portrait of Gloucester by Ben. Cumberbatch in HVI-2 was really good, so I was hopeful that he could carry RIII very well.
And so it proved to be. From the first images to the final ones I felt inside the play, transported to every scene. Tension mounting in my mind until the very end.
I loved everybody's acting, although I usually prefer more expressive iambic pentameters than those that were spoken. But in this case the delivery of the text in a naturalistic way worked very well.
Contrary to what I was expecting from watching HVI-2, I was not on RIII side, simply because he revealed himself since the beginning as the unsavory character that he is.
The toned down visual violence in relation to HVI-2 let the text breath and poetry shone deliciously during the whole play, except obviously during the brief wordless fighting at the Bosworth battle, which I watched with eyes semi-wide shut (Blurworth battle).
Outstanding acting came from Ben. Cumberbatch, Sophie Okonedo, Ben Daniels, Keeley Hawes. I thought Judi Dench was somehow subdued in the role of Cecily. But maybe having seen so much in her live she was simply portrayed as having no more tears or emotion to share.
Also liked Catesby more than I usually do. It's not easy to serve a master like RIII and remain faithful until the end and the actor playing him did it very well.
I feel a bit guilty of having given 1 star to Henry VI part 2, but images from that play haunted me for days, like Adrian Dunbar's head on a pike and so on. It seems I'm reacting in a bi-polar way to these adaptations. One un-watchable, the next exceptional. Maybe I just learned to close my eyes in the right moment. But it's not only that. Maybe the difference is in the quality of the play, RIII being much better than HVI-2. Whatever it was, I definitely loved this adaptation. Which makes me think, should I watch Henry VI part I? Something I would never consider after seeing HVI-2...
There were a few things that I missed in RIII. He doesn't say "I'm not in the vein", for instance. And the allusions to Edward IV's and Hastings mistress are gone. But there is so much to savour that this are minor quibbles.
A most definite TEN!