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Sunday, November 25th, 2007

Shakespeare

I was watching (the fantastically good) Bad Education the other night and saw a preview for the 2004 movie of The Merchant of Venice, and it looked pretty good. So I have added it to my Netflix queue, and today I bought the book to keep me company in the meantime, and this brought to mind my post a few days ago about embarrassment -- because Shakespeare is always a source of worry for me, that I will be found out as insufficiently literate, because I have not read or seen enough of his plays, or do not recognize quotations from them quickly enough. Silly (it goes without saying) but there it is.

Reading the play this afternoon, and getting into the rhythm of the meter more than I can remember having done in the past -- my memory is that when I was reading Shakespeare in high school and college, I was always trying to figure out what the meter should sound like, without much luck.

posted evening of November 25th, 2007: Respond
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Monday, December 10th, 2007

La Mala Educación

The first time I watched this movie, I thought it was the best Almodóvar film I had seen. But after a couple of viewings, I am revising that -- I love the film but not as much as All About My Mother or Volver. (It has things in common with both of those films.) What I really like about the movie is the layering of different levels of meta-story -- this layering is more complex than in All About My Mother but not, I think, ultimately as successful. I mean the first time I watched it, the story told by Fr. Manolo at the end just blew me away. But on the second or third time, that seems a little forced. And the identity confusion is great, but again: it is more complicated than in Volver, but when you're watching a second or third time so you have the elements of the story more firmly in mind, you just don't (I just don't) buy that Angel can trick Enrique into thinking he's Ignacio, or that Enrique won't confront him once he figures it out; and no reason is given for Angel to turn on Manolo. Still, an excellent movie -- these are very minor quibbles.

posted afternoon of December 10th, 2007: Respond
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