Written by: Shamrock McShane W/ William Shakespeare | Directed by: Tom Miller | Genre: Drama/Experimental
The marching tune begins, and Shamrock McShane begins the epic story of his life and some plays from a man named William Shakespeare. Shamrock McShane is a brilliant actor, and his experience on the stage oozes from his pores. Anyone who believes that stage and film are completely different things is only half right. You can tell right away who has a stage background and who doesn't. Most of the best actors have extensive stage experience... there's just something in the way they speak and carry themselves that is usually a dead giveaway. And if it's not a dead giveaway, it's because the characters they play don't seem like characters at all.
Watching Shamrock McShane circle around an auditorium pounding out Shakespeare is such a strange thing to say, "is a cool" thing. So is seeing him recite through a mask. But The Seven Sides Of Shakespeare is more than a film about a man who has extensive knowledge of Shakespeare productions. This is the story of Shamrock, this is his life and his views. It all kicks off with his first real casting in Romeo and Juliet back when he was 22 and his realization he loved the playwright. It's about after a substantial break, he became a teacher and was thrust back into the world... and loved it even more. We get a whirlwind of history, of some true Shakespearian comedy written tongue in cheek into his plays. We even get some creepy voice altering bits to add dramatic effect. The Seven Sides Of Shakespeare is many things... conventional is not one of them.
Tom Miller's film will NOT be for everyone. If you're one of those "people" who look for flash and sizzle, breakneck speed and, Disney level budgeting, you won't enjoy this film. It's a safe bet that The Seven Sides Of Shakespeare wasn't meant for you anyhow. This film is for those who enjoy a slower journey, a film for those who enjoy taking their time. There's a lot of images meant to add atmosphere and depth, scenic views with lots of narration and performance for the camera. There are not any explosions, blood, guts, or gore. Unless you are able to visualize some of the segments, Shamrock McShane vocalizes with your mind.
This is also not a film that follows the conventional methods of time. It's not always a linear production. It's a little long in the tooth but doesn't apologize for it. This is a film made for those interested. If this style of filmmaking or the content isn't something you enjoy, you just won't like it... plain and simple. But I believe this was intentional, that Tom Miller and Shamrock McShane knew who they were targeting for this film. If you enjoy a good stageplay or have any love of Shakespeare, you will probably enjoy this. I also think using Shakespeare as a jumping off point for Shamrock's story was a great idea. Then again, with his love of the content, would you expect anything else? The Seven Sides Of Shakespeare is DIY filmmaking standing tall. For those who enjoy the style, Miller's film comes highly recommended. Thank you for reading.
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