It took me three evenings to watch the DVD of the recent Tennant Hamlet, upheld only by native obstinacy. While seeming interminable, the play sustained some catastrophic cuts (for example, the evidence of Hamlet’s dirty trick on Rosencrantz and Guildenstern has been deleted, and the larger significance of the play has been trashed by removing Fortinbras’ arrival and important speech in the final scene.) And maybe I’m being captious, but the poetry frequently failed to make itself felt.
Unfortunately I also found that David Tennant’s girning undermined every scene. Maybe it was better on stage, and stage productions never look quite right on screen, but a good Gertrude and Patrick Stewart’s excellent Claudius seemed to negotiate the changed format without difficulty, as did Horatio and Polonius, so I’m not sure the excuse holds.
Alas. I don’t even want this one for a swop.