Thursday, May 6, 2010


Late Monday night I finally got around to watching this:

Yup. A very accessible and modern dress version of Hamlet. I have been urging my girls (and everyone else, too) to run over to their website and watch. 'Kenz and I saw Hamlet a couple years ago down at the SF but this newer adaptation builds on the previous. Go watch, go watch. (Just make sure you can block out the time. It's long).

I'm curious to know what you all think about the David Tennant performance, he's intense and frenzied to be sure. A fascinating performance. And Patrick Stewart (Jean Luc Picard) as Claudius never disappoints.

Ah, and then Ophelia. She has long been a character that interests me.

Years ago when my girls were just entering adolescence I read the popular and insightful Reviving Ophelia (required reading for Mothers of teen daughters). So named for Hamlet's famous love who killed herself because the world was too overwhelming for her. And because she did not know how to be accountable. The book addresses the hazards of young women growing up in a superficial society.
"You all die at 15." Chap. 1, p. 19
"Young girls slowly bury their childhood, put away their independent and imperious selves and submissively enter adult existence." Chap. 1, p. 21

"Girls stop being and start seeming." Chap. 1, p. 22

"The world tells us what we are to be and shapes us by the ends it sets before us. To men it says, work. To us, it says, seem. The less a woman has in her head the lighter she is for carrying." Chap. 1, p. 22

But now as I revisit the character Ophelia the less I view her 'syndrome' as entirely gender specific. To me it's all about the pain of becoming accountable for our thoughts, actions, life and very being. The problem with Ophelia is that she is utterly devoid of insights and content to remain so.

Read this and see what you think:
(Diagnosing and Treating THE OPHELIA SYNDROME by Thomas G. Plummer, BYU TODAY, Sept 1989)

All this would make for interesting and delightful Mother's day dinner table conversation, no?

1 comment:

lacy lee said...

You had me at Jean Luc Picard! Can't wait to check it out!