Saturday, December 4, 2010

A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935)

I think this was actually the first version I have seen of this Shakespeare play. I knew Puck's closing soliloquy from Dead Poets Society and had heard his famous line "what fools these mortals be" but that was about it.

Basically, two young couples enter a forest populated with fairies and spirits. The king of the fairies has Puck bewitch people to fall in love with the next person they see and, of course, they don't see the people intended for them and comedy ensues.

Mickey Rooney plays Puck who isn't exactly the protagonist, but no one character seems to fill this role - in the movie anyway. James Cagney plays the actor Bottom who, fittingly, gets turned into an ass while his troupe also wanders through the woods.

The film won the Oscar for best cinematography in what IMDb says is the first and only time there was a write-in winner at the Oscars.

93 to go...

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