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Mel Gibson and Franco Zeffirellis adaptation of Hamlet has filled some of the gaps left by Shakespeare This version of the classic story is thoroughly watchable This is Hamlet for the 90s according to the director and it is an especially entertaining version With much of the text diced the pace quickened and the action streamlined the film offers what amounts to an introduction to Shakespeares classic without losing any of the plays psychological complexities Gibson is perfect as Hamlet the Prince of Denmark and he is well supported by Glenn Close Gertrude Alan Bates Claudius Ian Holm Polonius and Helena Bonham Carter Ophelia This paper will show how Franco Zeffirelli justly mirrors Shakespeares tragedy on film Here is a short summary of the film version of the play Returning to his native Denmark after going to school in Germany young Prince Hamlet Gibson finds his uncle Claudius Alan Bates who now sits on the throne of the family castle Elsinore Claudius has married Hamlets mother Queen Gertrude Glenn Close a scant few weeks after the death of Hamlets beloved father the king The ghost of his father Paul Scofield who tells him he was poisoned by Claudius and commands his son to avenge his murder visits hamlet The troubled prince is plagued with doubts about the truth of what the ghost has spoken and determines to find out what really happened He feigns madness to disguise his intentions and when a troupe of players visits Elsinore he invites them to reenact a scene that closely duplicates his fathers murder His plan is to observe the reactions of Claudius in the hope it will help him determine if his uncle is guilty The ploy works only too well Claudius is so unnerved that he leaves before the performance ends and plots to have Hamlet killed This in turn precipitates unexpected havoc Polonius Ian Holm a garrulous old courtier is killed in error by
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