William Shakespeare | Critical Essay by Wendy Rogers Harper

This literature criticism consists of approximately 19 pages of analysis & critique of William Shakespeare.
This section contains 5,473 words
(approx. 19 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Wendy Rogers Harper

SOURCE: Harper, Wendy Rogers. “Polanski vs. Welles on Macbeth: Character or Fate?” Literature-Film Quarterly 14, no. 4 (1986): 203-10.

In the following essay, Harper contrasts Roman Polanski's naturalistic, psychological, and character-driven film adaptation of Shakespeare's Macbeth with Orson Welles's supernatural, externalized, and fatalistic screen interpretation of the tragedy.

Character or fate—which holds the key to the destiny of the characters in Macbeth? Shakespeare's play suggests both possibilities, but in interpreting Macbeth for the screen, directors Roman Polanski and Orson Welles each choose only one element as the determining factor. Polanski selects character, Welles fate, and their differing cinematic treatments reflect their choices. Whereas Polanski's imagery is realistic, Welles's is surrealistic. The former director focuses on the natural, the latter stresses the supernatural.1 Consistent with the notion that character is destiny, Polanski's film probes the psychology of its characters, illuminating the human...

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This section contains 5,473 words
(approx. 19 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Wendy Rogers Harper
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Literature Criticism Series
Critical Essay by Wendy Rogers Harper from Literature Criticism Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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