Haven’t ever seen a movie by Roland Emmerich. Until today that is. It’s actually something I was rather proud of. And even a bit smug.
How can you know you wouldn’t like it if you’d never seen one? His sort of movie wasn’t my cup of tea (You knew I’d squeeze a little bit of tea in over here, didn’t you?).
So, I was browbeaten into actually going to see one. And not just any movie, but his Anonymous. A movie questioning the authorship of Shakespeare‘s plays. Well, all of his works. I have a lot of emotional baggage tied up in this. Since I was a child, I’ve been fascinated with The Bard.
When we were encouraged to dress up as our favourite historical figure in grade school, I dug deep in my meagre savings and rented a Shakespeare costume. Even including a fake bald pate with wisps of hair escaping in a mad fashion.
I did a very questionable job of researching The Globe Theatre and other important facts, but I certainly looked like the guy. Or how we think he looked. As much as a nine-year old can look like a middle-aged Elizabethan.
As I say, I had a horse in this race. I wasn’t walking lightly into this encounter. Where would I turn for ammunition to defend me against the barrage of questionable historical claims? Well, twitter of course.
I went to Dainty Ballerina, who has a *real world* name, but isn’t necessary here. She directed me to Shakespeare Bites Back, and I’m grateful she did. This was all the ammunition I needed. I’m going to peruse this free download of an ebook, head off to the film and finish this post later.
Goodness. What a ridiculous piece of movie making. The comedy was often unintentional. I’m not going to pick it apart. Don’t want to spend a moment more of my life thinking about this. There was one overly ridiculous scene, and I resolved upon watching it that it would be the one I shared here.
The clown playing William Shakespeare was revelling in the cheers of the audience. In the next moment, he was crowd surfing over the patrons on the ground of the Globe Theatre. It was out of place and offensive and if you give me a few more minutes, I’ll think of some other adjectives of ridicule. That moment perfectly encapsulated the preposterous and depravity of this joke of a piece of revisionism.
And I’ll leave you with the best advice that’s included in the above-mentioned ebook:
However Shakespearians deal with this topic, we think that they should always express surprise when anyone starts even to suggest that Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon did not write Shakespeare.
And that’s what I’ve resolved to do. If anyone asks, I’ll express the most convincing surprise. Gladly.
Thank you so much for the warning and the ebook link. I am a lover of the Bard, as well. I often tell my husband that I would leave him if Shakespeare ever came back to life. I don’t think he takes me seriously, but I mean it!
Totally off topic but apropos: Have you ever seen Rozencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead? If not, you should. Hamlet + theater of the absurd= awesome.
I like how Tom Stoppard, who wrote Arcadia, about the uncertainty of the past as it relates to the future, also wrote Shakespeare in Love. What point am I trying to make here? Not sure. Something about these people trying to unstir the milk in the coffee bothers me. Like they are trying to promote themselves by stripping the past of its importance.
Let’s see how I can blunder with this comment. . .
I like Shakespeare. I think I’ve made my peace with Shakespeare having written Shakespeare and it’s not particularly important to me to research it any more. Maybe that makes me a Flat-Earther or something. I just don’t know how relevant it is to me personally that his works are positively attributable to one identifiable author, or many. . . I just like the finished product.
And since I’ll never meet him/her/them anyway, one author is as good as any other in MY book.
Can we be flat-earthers? That would be awesome. I would love to advocate passionately for something completely ridiculous. I see people doing it all the time with such conviction.
I decided to blog about flat-earthers thanks to your and the madman’s comments. I’m magnanimous like that.