Macbeth by Shakespeare and the Cinematic Interpretation by Roman Polanski
Macbeth is one of the great plays written by William Shakespeare in
the sixteenth century ,over three and a half centuries ago .It is
known all over the world and is still very popular even to this very
day.It is the basis of many movies and theatrical plays .One film
interpretation was made by Roman Polanski in 1971,centuries after it
was first performed in Elizabethan sixteenth century England .Therefor
there is a great difference between this and the original ,as things
have changed greatly over the many years .
Shakespeare was an amazing story writer and entertainer and obviously
wanted to catch his audiences imagination ,but even for such a gifted
person as he, it must still have been a very difficult task .He had to
rely on vivid descriptions and whatever was available in his theatre
and the imagination of the audience to put a picture in their heads of
the setting, surroundings and and the mood of the play.
The play Macbeth was written in sixteen century Elizabethan England
.In very different times compared to today .The people of sixteenth
century England were very superstitious, believing in witches ,evil
spirits and the supernatural .They recognise that the banging of drums
create the sound of thunder and signified the presence of evil .They
also had a clearer understanding of the language used .
Roman Polanski created his cinematic interpretation in 1971 and
therefore had an easier job in capturing the people's imagination
especially as he had cinematic technolodgy as his disposal ,however
his modern audiences would have been more cynical ,in general
,concerning witchcraft and superstitions and would not have
appreciated the symbolism as Shakespeare's sixteenth century audience
would .How success was this film director ,therefore ,in recreating
act 1 , scene 1 of 'Macbeth'?
Concerning the opening of his first scene act 1 ,scene 1 ,Shakespeare
recognised the needs to grab his audience's attention instantly
,letting them know what was going on ,by giving them clear graphic
descriptions to put fear into their minds.
His play was performed in an open air sixteenth century theatre ,with
a wooden sixteenth century stage ,and the vivid descriptions he gave
to let the audience know what setting to visualise.
Act 1 ,scene 1 ,is placed on an 'open place' , amidst the thunder and
lightning. Instantly Shakespeare has made the audience aware of the
evil present an the emotional violence which will follow in the play
.In Elizabethan England people were very superstitious and it was
believed that fierce storms released forces of evil, and were omens of
unrest in individual people and whole countries .As the scene comes to
an end the three witches depart, they 'Hover through fog and filthy