Hamlet, 1948, Act 1, Scene 2: Olivier as Hamlet

Olivier’s film production of Hamlet has been much admired, particularly for scenes such as this one, which transforms the soliloquy format into an inward meditation. However, there was some criticism of the film’s endless interior shots of the castle, and of the openly Freudian interpretation of Hamlet’s openly sexual attraction to his mother, Queen Gertrude, who was too youthful by far. The opening stresses overmuch that Hamlet’s tragic flaw is that he cannot make up his mind.

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1948

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Except where otherwise specified, all written commentary is © 2016, Hugh Macrae Richmond