The Tempest

Reviewed by
May 2011, no. 331

The Tempest

Reviewed by
May 2011, no. 331

Anyone who remembers Julie Taymor’s 1999 version of Titus Andronicus, Shakespeare’s first published play, will not be expecting a reverential treatment of what is reputedly his last, but Taymor’s new film does move more or less inexorably to the play’s final wisdom: ‘The rarer action is / In virtue than in vengeance.’ The Tempest is a difficult play, fraught with tensions that resonate perhaps even more forcefully in our time than in Shakespeare’s, but overall it is pervaded by a sense of ‘lastness’, of moving almost painfully towards resolution of what may have seemed irreconcilable conflicts, as if its author shared with Miranda her view of a ‘brave new world / That has such people in’t’.

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