Posted Oct 28 2015

Macbeth - This Mickey's Maccy Doesn't Quite Rock

Dir: Justin Kurzel

Starring Michael Fassbender, Marion Cottilard, Jack Reynor, David Thewlis, Paddy Considine, Sean Harris

The Weird Sisters walk through a barren Highlands intoning what is to come before Kurzel’s film erupts into a bloody battle, made distant by an intense, barely moving use of slow motion and an absence of sound. It’s an impressive beginning that the film that follows often fails to live up to.

This is Macbeth recast in the dirt and blood of the battlefield, appropriate in its harshness and reflected in the bleakness of what follows. But this early visual panache soon begins to drag as events unfold, as Macbeth and his Lady slowly escalate into murder and madness. It’s here that the film starts to lose its initial vibrancy. Whilst the internal reflection is of course paramount, Kurzel too often lets his whole film ponder, rather than his central character. This is after all, Shakespeare’s most brutally effective play, here too often we find ourselves waiting for Fassbender, who is good at times but bested by a much more efficient – and subsequently moving – performance from Cottilard.

The film is splendidly and, at times, very imaginatively staged, extremely well cast and played for the most part. But the energy of its finest moments, belie the rather sluggish nature of the rest. A mixed Maccy at best.


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