Comparing and Contrasting Two Interpretations Of The Opening Scene Of A Midsummer Night's Dream


The setting in the two films using the back story is quite the same but the way the producers have set it out is not quite the same at all .

Similarities & Differences

The 1999 version is very different in a way to the BBC version starting off with the fact that the races of the actors in the play are very different.Hermia, Edgus and Demetrius all black and the Amazon queen ( Hippolyte) looks like she’s from a country in Europe.Another one of my points is that the setting seems to be the 1990s that the 1999 film film is quite magical and romantic unlike the BBC version which is like a military camp. Whereas Thesus wears his military badges proudly and the soldiers that stand next to him are suited as if they’re going into a sci-fi battle. Women however, are treated the same: like objects sold or/and bought.

1999 film 

It is set in a much earlier period around the Edwardian times, in this timeframe The actors leave a feeling that Thesus and Hippolyta do want to get married this time. But however he Hippolyte is not as magical she is supposed to be according to Shakespeare’s play. As the fairy queen she should have powers but in the play she seems to be as regular as a normal lady in the Edwardian period.In this version Lysander and Demetrius are almost fighting for Hermia and Theseus seems to actually like him this time round. Hermia when she is speaking seems afraid to say anything in case her father gets angry. Unlike his daughter Idrees is always spitting and shouting his lines to show as much anger as he possibly can.

BBC Version

In the BBC version of the actors like I said in the first Paragraph are all different races, the city of Athens which was once a place of myths and legends has been interpreted into a dictatorship where people are controlled by fear power and iPads. The effect it has on people is that the city has become a dystopia under government control and Theseus rules as if he is a military leader conquering one country at a time.His role is being brutally enforced. Hermia unlike in the 1999 film has the courage to speak back not considering that her father has a very high place here in the society. Lysander seems to be very shy and he doesn’t seem to be fighting for her; he only seems to be joking when he speaks to Thesus. Unlike Demetrius who is also in a high ranking society as one of Thesus' soldiers. Hippolyte however is quite magical as she tries to escape using her magic she is wheeled into the room captive as a prisoner. His empire seems to be as if it is a modern take on Hitler’s NaziS You can see this as the A on the flag is almost as if it’s replacing a swastika using the exact same colours as seen on a swastika.

Impact on me

BBC Version : The impact that the BBC version has on me is that it is a lot more related to the future as it is a dystopian type of style and it seems to have taken away the magic of Athens so the characters are different they seem to portray the roles much differently than they do in the 1999 version it makes me think a lot more about the characters.The one thing that takes my mind away from the whole idea is that they make they skipped out online which is crucial because every line has a purpose and it takes a turn a very big turn on my thoughts on the play.

1999 Film: The 9989 version on the other hand is very romantic and seems to be very magical; it uses the plates original script and hasn’t skipped out one of the lines in the play. The character that please hernia seems to be very shy and doesn’t hurt and I don’t speak at all which confuses me a bit as the BBC version has Hannah who is determined for her voice to be heard in the play.A big impact it had on me was the fact that Hippolyte wasn’t very magical at all and she just seems to be normal an ordinary there wasn’t really anything magical or different about her which takes away the fact that she is the Queen of the Amazons and the legends of Athens.

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