Shakespeare

Richard II – Shakespeare Review

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I really don’t talk about classics enough so I think it’s time to talk about some of the Shakespeare I’ve read this year. First my most recent read. Richard II. I’m gonna be honest with you. I picked up my Complete Pelican Shakespeare just because I wanted to read Richard Ii this time around. I knew I wanted to see the movie because one of my favorite actors play Richard II. I’m obsessed with Ben Whishaw and so I needed to get through the play before watching the film.

I have to say the play did make me pretty excited to see the film. Richard II was another ruler who became too focused on the things that ruling brought him.  He makes some decisions that seem unjust. These actions ultimately lead to him being usurped of his throne. I didn’t fully see Richard as a bad guy in this. He seemed misguided by his notions. The belief that God chose him to rule affects things.

I love Shakespeare’s morally gray characters. Richard makes decisions that don’t really seem at all planned. I really don’t think Richard thinks ahead to the consequences his actions could have or cares. All his decisions are the right ones to him. He sees himself as God’s chosen king. God can’t be wrong so neigh can any of Richard’s actions. It’s probably a fun way to rule. Richard definitely seemed to enjoy it while it lasted. I feel like He’s such a complex character. I really enjoyed following him in this story.

When he banishes Bolingbroke he is somewhat backed into a corner with not many options. I was really rooting for Bolingbroke, though. I love a good revenge story. Take back your fortune and the crown too since everyone is backing you for that now.  he just wanted what was rightfully his. I find it ironic that Richard uses this ideology to convince himself of all the decisions he makes being righteous in order to take away what is rightfully someone else.

I have to question why the people are so quick to rally to Bolingbroke’s side. There are the unjust decisions to look at but I wonder about other things with Richard. He is a King that shies away from violence or sentencing people to death. Instead, he will banish people. At times where it would be best for him to kill them outright. He would have kept his throne much longer if he got rid of Bolingbroke instead of letting him flee for instance. I don’t even fully know where I’m going with this but I just would love to see more theories about Richard and his council.

I love Shakespeare’s language. This play was not an exception. Really nice sounding lines. I can’t wait to watch thew movie and see what the actors do with this play. Especially excited for some of the speeches. The last monologue we get of Richard in particular. So excited to see Ben Whishaw’s delivery.

 

 

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Book Reviews, YA

Harry Potter And The Cursed Child Review

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It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

This play is about two people who are dealing with the legacies of their parents. Scorpius and Albus bond because they are both on the outskirts because of these legacies in some way. Because of what people will expect from them. That’s a compelling story for me.

Albus and Scorpius are great characters. I love their friendship throughout this. I love seeing them go on this journey together and separately at times. They play off each other really well. They are also so different from their parents. It was cool to see.

This story really was about fathers and sons in a way. The relationships between them and familial love. Also the relationship between Harry and Dumbledore as well. Another father-son like relationship since Dumbledore was a father figure for Harry. It really says a lot about those relationships.

Another message portrayed in the play is that It’s not always easy to connect with your parents but that doesn’t mean they don’t love you. It’s not always easy to connect with your kids and that doesn’t make you a bad parent.

It’s also about trying to find your place in the world. That definitely connects to Albus and Scorpius issues with their father’s legacies. Think it’s really relatable for everyone too.

Time travel is always messy. It always messes things up (points to Barry Allen). Time travel is dangerous. I felt like the play really showed how time travel can be dangerous and points out why people should not do it. Shows why it makes sense to avoid time travel altogether. There really were no big plot holes because of the way the time turner worked. As long as it was intact you could potentially go back to fix a mistake. This is a nice way to handle time travel in a work.

There is a relationship foreshadowed that feels so forced and ridiculous to me near the end. Mainly because I hated one of the characters maybe. I don’t know. Not going into it more because it could spoil something. It was a weird break to me.

Great villain. Without spoiling anything, their motive made a lot of sense.They were brilliant . I love brilliant and deceptive villains. Especially for a play.

I had some issues in the first act I can’t really pinpoint. I think the rapid progression over the years to get them to the fourth year may have been part of it. I’m usually not a fan of time hops like that.

I think this was a good expansion to the Harry Potter universe.I think where certain characters ended up made a lot of sense. I love theater and was really excited this was in play form honestly. I would love to see this on stage. I kept thinking about the way things would be staged. Some really beautiful dark scenes where the stage directions excited me.My fiance was a technical theater major so I can’t help but think about sound design and stage design when reading plays now. This play had to be amazing to see on stage. Realy enjoyed reading it and imagining in my head as well.