As time changes, creators interpret the themes from Hamlet differently. It leads to various adaptations that include technologies, current culture and ideas. In other words, what the audience can see in today’s world, they can recognize in modern Hamlet versions.
For years Hamlet has been a subject of controversy. Different versions of Shakespeare’s play reflect it better than reviews and analyses. Today, it has been re-made and adapted to cinema numerous times. The authors of such alternative variants take their perception and translate it to the screen. They emphasize the essential, in their opinion, messages, dismissing others.
Both theatrical and movie industries created infinite versions of the play. Film adaptations, in particular, upraise a collection of distinctive opinions. Such Hamlet interpretations are prone to divide into two directions. Some adaptors highlight psychology and examine the characters’ mental states. Others prefer exploring political themes of the play. Yet everyone tries to introduce original ideas and revelations.
The most prominent movie versions are by Gyorgi Kozintsev (1964), Franco Zeffirelli (1990), and Michael Almereyda (2000). Each modern variant gave a spectacular view on the original play. All of them present new references to historical and cultural issues.
The original Shakespeare’s play could last up to 4 hours. Yet modern adapters leave out episodes and whole characters. A prominent example is Fortinbras, commonly omitted in Hamlet’s adaptations. He brings a more political dimension to the play. Directors who aim for a psychological impact tend to exclude the character. Removing his plotline can happen without significant losses for the story. Zeffirelli’s 1990 adaptation is a prominent example of such action. In contrast, Kozintsev’s version brings much attention to Fortinbras’ presence.
Female characters tend to have more influence in modern-day Hamlet versions. The dominance of male protagonists in original plays is standard for the period. Today, it is adapted and translated into present-day ideas. Many directors manage to portray female characters as more independent people. In Almereyda’s adaptation, Ophelia became a profound character. She shows more personality traits and a wider emotional specter than in the original version. Shifting focus on figures like Ophelia and Gertrude ignites a new discussion around Hamlet. A viewer encounters a different approach and new ground for analysis.
In that manner, in 2018, a film Ophelia was released. The new version explored Ophelia’s perspective on the events. The immediate critics’ reviews were mixed and caused a wave of speculations. Uprising gender roles and motherhood by creating a female-focused movie is rather brave. It’s an inventive way of breaking the inequality of the Renaissance era. The film discovered new perspectives of the original play.
Some movie adaptations of Hamlet turn into new masterpieces. Adaptors add personal touches and modern items like contemporary art and technologies. In such alternative versions, various aspects of Hamlet are discussed. Some focus on the mystique side with dark forces; others take a political approach. Hamlet’s film adaptations keep viewers shocked and fascinated. Thus, they open the door to new discussions, keeping Shakespeare’s masterpiece alive for so many years.