Wednesday, December 21, 2016
Review: Saving Hamlet
What a weird but ultimately interesting mish-mash of concepts Saving Hamlet turned out to be! The story is part teen coming of age novel, part historical fiction and part science-fiction.
Emma is starting a brand new year and working on becoming a brand new person: she has just quite her high school's soccer team, where she was a big star, and is now a proud member of the school's theater production crew. She knows this is going to be a great year because this year they are staging Hamlet. Her best friend Lulu, a talented actress is pretty much counting on being the school's first female Prince of Denmark and her crush Brandon is going to be directing so Emma is psyched to get to spend all kinds of time with him.
Then at auditions everything starts to go wrong. Then, Lulu's parents find out she's gay and they do NOT take the news well. Then, Lulu gets cast as Ophelia because Emma's crush ends refuses to have a girl play the lead. When Emma suggests giving the total acting noob who's been cast as Hamlet a chance Lulu stops speaking to her. And honestly, the play is turning out to be a complete and total disaster because Brandon may well be the worst director of all time. Emma is trying her hardest to keep everything together when she has a stage accident - she falls through a trap door and bonks her head. When she wakes up she is a the Globe Theater in London. During the Renaissance. And William Shakespeare is on the stage. Luckily for Emma she just got a pixie cut so all the actors in the company think she's a boy. In fact they assume she is the new director's assistant and give her a job.
The story goes back and forth between the Globe and it's production of Hamlet and Emma's time and her production. Turns out that even on the greatest stage in the world, with the greatest playwright in the world, theater is a tough gig... so now Emma has TWO plays to save, a friendship to repair, and maybe even a second crush to pine over.
The story is fast paced and fun, and call me a sucker but I do love pretty much anything Shakespearean, so I was pretty much sold on this one from go. There are some cheese-tastic moments, and it's not anything groudbreaking story wise, but it's definitely solid.
Final Review: 3/5 stars