Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Review: Much Ado About Nothing (Joss Whedon, 2013)

There is something irresistibly charming about this sumptuous romantic comedy; a surprisingly perfect match between the creator of Buffy and the director of The Avengers and the incomparable work of William Shakespeare. It is hard to find any of the Bard’s works that haven’t been adapted to death, but Whedon has made this version his own and should please even the most devoted Shakespeare purists. With the interesting stylistic decision to photograph the film in black and white, Whedon also utilised his own home over the course of a slim twelve-day shoot. Most of the cast is made up of Whedon’s friends and actors he has worked with on previous projects.

Leonato (Clark Gregg), the governor of Messina, is visited by his friend Don Pedro (Reed Diamond) who is returning from a victorious campaign against his rebellious brother Don John (Sean Maher). Accompanying Don Pedroare two of his officers, Benedick (Alexis Denisof) and Claudio (Fran Kranz). While in Messina, Claudio falls for Leonato’s daughter, Hero (Jillian Morgese), while Benedick and Leonato’s niece, Beatrice (Amy Acker), find themselves at odds in a series of verbal sparring matches. The budding love between Claudio and Hero prompts Don Pedro to arrange a marriage to unite the two, while he, with the help of Leonato, Claudio and Hero, attempts to trick Benedick and Beatrice into falling in love. Don John, with the help of his villainous allies, starts a plot against the happy couple.

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