I took my time, but when I got to the top, it was a sight to see. I had climbed for three hours without any breaks. I took a few pictures when I noticed movement up ahead. I lowered my camera and that is when I saw something hiding behind a rock formation. It didn’t appear to be a person or animal. I had heard of these creatures before.
It knocked me down with hardly a touch. The only thing I saw was its large head. It had the shape of an onion, and its neck was skinny and long. It blended into its upper torso and when I turned to get a good look, its hand with long fingers rested on the top of my head. It suspended me in the air for a few seconds before moving me to its home.
When I opened my mouth, nothing came out. It heard my intention anyway. The large head was even bigger than before, and beads of moisture clung to its flesh. Its skin glistened under the operating light above me as it inspected my face. It touched my forehead and backed up.
I watched it peel back his eyelid to reveal another eyelid. It peeled that one too until a tiny eye remained. He did the same with his other eye. I heard the sound before I saw it. His eyes had become little puncture tools. They twisted around and reached out to my face. I screamed when it entered my cheek, but no sound was heard. It was temporarily blocking the sound. I screamed again when it drilled into my other cheek.
It inspected the holes with his fingers gripping my jaw before putting his eyelids back in place. I passed out from the pain because when I regained consciousness, my mouth had been forced open with a device, and it was gone. I was drooling and hardly able to breathe. My arms and legs were secured in several places, and I felt a large cold strap around my chest and hips. I was now fully exposed.
There was enough slack to move my head a little bit, and when I did, pain started at the base of my neck and went through every inch of my face. It had put rods through the holes in my cheeks and connected them to through holes it had made in my arms, legs, and feet.
I heard the words “cut body” from behind me. I thought of what I could do to convince them not to cut into me. I waited what seemed forever, but had to have only been a few minutes. The same creature with the onion shape head appeared. It raised its hand and moved it over my face. My pain went away and my body became tired. I fought to stay awake.
When I came to again, I was back on the mountain top. There were no holes in my face, but I felt my body chemistry had changed. I looked down at my bare feet. There were no holes in them either, only scars. The time on my watch chimed. Fifteen minutes had passed. I knew it was much longer elsewhere.
As I took my first step down, I wondered what kind of undercover assignment the government had me doing.
Publication Date: October 19, 2006 (first edition)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education
Page Number: 224
This book is a little different from the rest sitting on my shelves. It is basically a book that will stimulate your brain. It has two different exercise levels, and most are fairly easy to do. It focuses on memory, language, attention and concentration, logical reasoning, and visual and spatial acuity. It’s good for older children and adults. I plan on sitting down and finishing all the exercises at some point. Probably too big to fit into your purse, but small enough to fit into a bigger purse or bag. I’m sure you can find a used copy fairly cheap or if you prefer a new one, it’s about 17 dollars.
I’ve read the book and seen the movie adaptation with Viggo Mortensen as Man and Kodi Smit-McPhee as Boy. The Road was a quick read about the journey of a father and his son in post-apocalyptic America. Without adequate resources and a car, they trek across the harsh land toward warmer weather. They stay away from danger, bandits and cannibals, as much as possible by staying on the paved roads. They still come into contact with dangerous elements, but find ways to cope and escape. His father keeps his son in check through reinforcement as his fears increase along the way. During those times I found myself wondering why he said “papa” so much, I sought to identify with the boy to better understand him. I’m not sure if it was McCarthy’s intent, but the son soon became a little too much for me. It might be the story became too uncomfortable for me, thinking of being a parent while living in a post-apocalyptic America where there are too many unknowns and not enough supplies readily available. No thanks. The father and son continue on their trek and learn even more of the other’s strengths and weaknesses. When they arrive to their last destination, it’s a passing of the torch so to speak. The boy has now become a man (as much as this world allows), and finds a new way to survive. Now, you might be asking yourself why I’m recommending this book if I found the boy to be somewhat repetitive in his words and annoying at times. I’m recommending it because while this isn’t a nail biter kind of book, McCarthy’s description and story is still good. I warn you McCarthy doesn’t like quotations or commas so don’t be alarmed when you don’t find them.
Get out your reading glasses and a large glass of wine or whatever else you like to drink. I read this book a long time ago, but not sure exactly when. Obviously after April 1997. Being that I like to read about espionage and history, this book was ripe for the reading. I wrote on the inside front cover “very good book” when I was done with it. You know in case I forgot what I read or that it was a very good book. The Secret War Against the Jews is exactly what the title says. It separates itself into major three time periods: 1920-1947, 1948-1973, and 1974-1992. It encompasses the major players and countries who had roles in this political corruption in regards to Israel and the Jewish people. It speaks of top-secret documents, current and former spies, Nazi-hunters, selling of secrets, profits, and covert policies. From the British Royalty to Israel to Oliver North, not many stones were still left in place. This was regarded as a controversial book when it was first published and probably still is today. I’m not one to buy into conspiracy theories although some who have read this book view it was such and don’t believe in the authors’ findings via research and interviews, but I found it highly interesting, and maybe you will too.
Although I’ve read only one of these bookings, I know someone who has read all three. He said they are all great especially “In the Garden of Beasts” and “Night.” It was too important for me to pass up not recommending them, given we currently live in a time when it’s become all too easy to attack other people based on their beliefs whether religious or something else. I’ve found freedom of speech having a fine line. It always comes down to whether the action of someone promotes harmonious integration with as many people as possible for me. I understand it isn’t easy when life’s reality is in front of you. Sometimes you have to be not so nice in order to take care of your own well-being. You don’t want to be perceived as a pushover as much as you don’t want to be regarded as an asshole, but if the current political debating occurring across the U.S regarding immigration and economy says anything, now is not the time to close your eyes. I admit I’ve been doing some of this because it’s easy for me to get annoyed and angry over certain things happening and not happening, but we live in a world where we are all impacted. Sometimes I need to mentally divorce myself and go into a kind of seclusion.
A varied society with varied people with radically different views brings varied chaos. The only thing I can do is speak from my own experiences and beliefs. I used to reside in the black and white areas, but now I also am able to see the gray too. Some of my hardcore beliefs have changed and while I didn’t write this to have a political debate on social media, I’ve been known to argue certain aspects one might find under the expansive political umbrella. My roommate and I are quite different in some areas and surprisingly closer in others. It’s much harder when polar opposites come face to face. This is what I believe is going on right now in the U.S. and elsewhere: the battle between the conservative ideology (rooted in all kinds of phobia and discrimination) versus liberal ideology (rooted in extreme progressiveness and also intolerance). I don’t see much purpose for either one, but I’m not the one who’s going to change these people to shift more to the middle. History appears to be repeating itself and with this in mind, find your own footing as best you can in a society of many and try to pick as many people up instead of kicking them down.
In the Garden of Beastsis a non-fiction book about William E. Dodd, American ambassador to Nazi Germany in 1933. He speaks of the time when Hitler and his regime spreads his sinister plan across Germany first, hoping for European domination. I have yet to read this book, but look forward to it. I know of others who have read Erik Larson and said he’s an excellent writer. The first publication date was 2011 by Crown and is 448 pages in length.
The Diary of a Young Girl is a non-fiction book about Anne Frank’s process of coming to age, in a way, during a time when certain groups were being exterminated. This version includes more of her identity and the conflicts she had with her mother. It still captures her feelings and emotions as she hides from the Nazi soldiers in Amsterdam when all she wanted to do was live a normal childhood in the 1940s. The first publication date was 1995 and is 340 pages in length.
Night is a memoir book about Elie Wiesel’s time as a teenager. He writes about the fear, death, and survival during his time in Auschwitz and Buchenwald. He writes from the heart, as painful and frightening as it is, so others can understand what it means to survive nightmare after nightmare. It’s a reminder that humanity can be cruel, but also kind. The first publication date was 2006 and is 120 pages in length.
I’m not going to lie, I’m really damn tired today so my quotes are going to reflect this. I’m sure most people had to work today, but for those who live in the United States many did not because of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. I was not one of those fortunate people since I don’t work for the post office or any bank, but it should serve as a reminder to all of us to be aware that life continues beyond our own little piece of the world. Don’t get me wrong, I’m lucky and happy to be alive, but as of today my eye hurts and running on fumes. On a positive note, I did more rewriting this weekend despite wanting to color and work on my puzzle instead.
I’m starting out on this very easy hike on a fairly warm day, which was last Saturday.
I gotta take a picture of my shadow.
And I’m walking on the trail and taking a few pictures. Someone always has to dump their garbage and whatever this monstrosity is I have no clue.
This is probably the best picture I took.
And I stop and take a selfie with my chapped lips (insanely so since moving here).
The sun is setting in one place and the moon has now appeared the other direction. This is the end of my hike and pictures. It took a good hour when I subtract the picture taking and looking at the planes flying overhead.
Quote from Papillon (1973) by Toussaint: “If you’re going to catch leprosy, it’s better to catch it from money than from people.”
Quote from Papillon (2017) by Dega: “Now what’s the son of two school teachers doing in a place like this?”
Allied Artist and Columbia Pictures
Czech Anglo Productions, Ram Bergman Productions, and FishCorb Films
I’ve been wanting to watch these movies for a while. I finally got around to brushing the dust off the cases and putting them into my Blu-ray player. I’ve seen a handful of prison movies and enough to know what it can be, shouldn’t be, actually is, history of it, and current reality of the institution that has grown its own wings and become a beast of its own. I liked both versions although the original matches more to the book than the remake. The original script was written primarily by Dalton Trumbo and the remake by Aaron Guzikowski. Instead of separating them, I’m going to semi blend both into one piece of synergy, keeping in mind Henri Charrière more than likely did not experience everything he wrote about. It was more an amalgamation of the prisoners he met and the things he witnessed, but he never lost sight of what he went through as well. This is a good thing because it’s almost unimaginable if he actually did go through all that and survived as well as he did.
Pisaries Creator’s Note: I tend to put spoilers in movies that were released for quite some time and although the remake is newer, the story is not. There will be some spoilers about Henri Charrière’s and other prisoners’ experiences below. If you care not to know about them, do not read any further, but do watch these movies if you haven’t already.
Papillon is based from the autobiography of Henri Charrière’s time in the French Guiana penal colony where the mortality rate at one time was 75%. The colony opened in 1852 and housed political prisoners at Devil’s Island, those in solitary confinement at Saint-Joseph Island, and the general population at Royale Island. Additional housing was later built. Much like other facilities that closed its doors because of poor conditions, rampant abuses, and public criticism, the French government stopped sending prisoners there in 1938 and the colony closed in 1953. While many prisoners died of violence, diseases, lack of nutrition, and forced labor, a few were lucky to escape and live. One of them was Henri although records say instead of escaping from Devil’s Island, he escaped from the main island. There has been authentication issues regarding his book as some argue Henri embellished his story. Either way it makes for a great story and this is why he probably angled it as an autobiography rather than fiction. There is no disputing he was housed at this general penal colony and was sentenced to live there for his entire life, starting in 1931.
Getting to Know the Major Players
To sound like a broken record, Papillon is an adaptation of Henri Charrière’s autobiographical book although more accurate is a narrative book by today’s standards. Dalton Trumbo and Lorenzo Semple Jr. are credited as the screenwriters and William Goldman as a contributing writer. The director was Franklin J. Schaffner. It was given an MPAA rating of R. It has a running time of 2 hours and 31 minutes. It is produced by Robert Dorfmann, Franklin J. Schaffner, and Ted Richmond. It is distributed by Allied Artists and Columbia Pictures. In the 2017 version, Aaron Guzikowski is the screenwriter who adapted his script from the books “Papillon” and “Banco” by Henri Charrière’s with Michael Noer as the director. This version also has a MPAA rating of R for violence including bloody images, language, nudity, and some sexual material. It has a running time of 2 hours and 13 minutes. It is produced by Czech Anglo Productions, Ram Bergman Productions, and FishCorb Films. It is distributed by Bleecker Street. Both movies included Louis Dega, a prisoner playing a major role in Henri Charrière’s attempts to free himself, and this is the platform on which the story progresses and evolves. Dega is played by Dustin Hoffman in the first movie and Rami Malek in the second. Charrière is played by Steve McQueen in the first movie and Charlie Hunnam in the second.
I will start with the summary of the original and then remake. You are pretty much thrust into the harshness of Henri Charrière life. It’s not going to be easy for him as he takes his walk of shame down a crowded street after being convicted of murder. He is with others who have been charged to carry out their sentence in the French Guiana penal colony and those who are sentenced 8+ years spend their whole life there. He hears about another prisoner named Louis Dega who is rumored to have lots of money. Henri meets the soft-spoken prisoner after Louis gets a little too close to violence. They come to a an agreement where they will help each other out once they arrive: Louis will provide Henri money for his future plans and Henri will provide Louis with physical protection against other prisoners and guards. They aren’t the only ones with plans as one prisoner tries to escape and the other hurts himself to be sent to the infirmary. The rest are given a lecture about what happens if they try to escape: the first attempt gets a man two years in solitary, the second attempt means gets a man five years in solitary, and a third attempt means the guillotine.
Because of Louis’s crime, he is sent to hard labor with Henri in tow. It is here Henri makes his first attempt at escaping, only to find you shouldn’t be so trusting, and is sent to solitary confinement. He is given nothing to do but pace back and forth and eat the little meals he receives each day. He is able to get by when he finds half a coconut in his bucket, but it doesn’t last long. This extra food given to him allows Warden Barrot (William Smithers), the chance to show how much worse it can get. He punishes Henri with small rations and makes him live without any light. This leads to a sort of mental breakdown where he imagines his life before he came there, illustrating his questioning the choices he made. When he is released from solitary confinement, he reunites with Louis and meets another prisoner, Maturette (Robert Deman) who is being preyed upon by a guard.
They come together and with the doctor’s help named Pascal (Val Avery), Henri makes a second escape attempt. Initially Louis only wanted to help him, but after it doesn’t go as planned, he is forced to go with Henri. They scale the walls and make it to the jungle, only to find another problem. Yet, luck is on their side as Henri, Louis, and Maturette find another boat with the help of a trapper and leper colony chief named Toussaint (Anthony Zerbe). They land in Colombia and are forced to separate right away as guns are pointed at them. Henri has no choice but to leave and meets a Spanish prisoner. He next wakes up in a village of natives who feed and house him. It is here he sees what true freedom really means. Their bond is solidified when Henri gives the leader a butterfly tattoo like his own.
He next finds refuge in a convent until he is betrayed again. He is sent back to the penal colony, and this time for five years in solitary confinement which leaves him looking older and weary. He somehow makes it through this period and is sent to Devil’s Island to a cabin for live the rest of his life. Despite his aging, he recognizes Louis tending to his garden and pig. More time spent with him reinforces Henri’s own need for freedom, even if it costs him his life. This time there is no jungle to battle through or boat to secure. He is high up with nothing to keep him afloat except coconuts strung together. After he says goodbye to Louis, he makes the jump to freedom he’s wanted throughout his incarceration.
The opening of the remake immerses you into the life of Henri Charrière prior to talking the walk to the boat that will carry him to his new life at the penal colony. It gives you a little window into Henri, allowing you some sympathy for his situation. He might be part of the Parisian underworld, but it doesn’t mean he’s a murderer for which he was framed. After being found guilty despite his alibi given from his lover, Nenette (Eve Hewson), he find himself walking close to Louis Dega. It is here where Louis’s wife tells him he will get out soon. As they are loaded onto the boat that will take the prisoners to South America, Henri settles into the madness as best he can. He is now in a place where every man is for himself, and despite this he still only takes physical action when it is only necessary. He comes to an agreement with Louis after helping him during an altercation. They exchange money for protection, giving you the first glimpse into prison reality. When they finally arrive on the island, a few try to escape in front of everyone. They don’t get very far and the ones that do eventually are brought back. It is at this moment Louis realizes this is not what he thought it would be and is truly scared for the first time since arriving.
After an escaped prisoner, Julot (Michael Socha) is guillotined, it’s Henri and Louis who have to move the body to its final resting place. It is here Henri makes his first attempt at escaping, but he doesn’t make it far. It leaves Louis dazed and frightened. Henri is given two years in solitary confinement where he can’t talk. The only human interaction is when he sticks his head out of the hole for a haircut. He is annoyed when another prisoner asks him how he looks, but after a prolonged amount of time there, he finds himself asking how he looks too to another prisoner. He does a lot of walking back and forth along with push ups until he is too weak to do anything. His rations have been cut in half after the guards find out someone has been supplementing his food with coconuts. After keeping his silence with Warden Barrot (Yorick van Wageningen) about this, he still survives and is released to the infirmary.
He reunites with Louis and makes an aquaintance with a prisoner named Maturette (Joel Basman). Reluctant at first to help Henri, Maturette decides to help him by sacrificing himself sexually. This helps clear the way for a successful second attempt at escaping. This time it isn’t only Henri, but also Dega, Maturette and Celier (Roland Møller). While they are now free, it isn’t all that great because there are too many people in their boat. This leads to an altercation where not everyone lives. They leave what happened behind as best they can and find solace at a convent in Colombia. Despite their willingness to live better lives, they are captured again and sent back to the penal colony.
After five years has passed, Henri is released from solitary confinement and sent to Devil’s Island to live for the rest of his life. He isn’t willing to settle for less and despite Louis who tries to convince him to stay, he commits to jumping from the cliff into the water where many have died before. In this third escape attempt, Henri swims to his makeshift coconut raft hoping to find freedom he desires.
Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman or Charlie Hunnam and Rami Malek
I was thinking McQueen and Hoffman were going to be the better choice when it came to acting. Dustin Hoffman carries himself on the screen in such a way that you don’t blink too many times in case you might miss something. I have now seen two movies Steve McQueen starred in, this and The Magnificent Seven, and while his performance edged out Hunnam, it wasn’t by much because Hunnam’s portrayal of Henri was good and borderline great. Where McQueen’s performance was a little more aggressive in nature, Hunnam’s performance was just as insistent but more of a quiet nature especially when had to dig deep during his solitary confinement days or should I say years. This isn’t to say Hunnam wasn’t capable of showing his darker side when his character’s life depended on it. I thought Hunnam’s was a more likable Henri compared to McQueen’s. While he might not have had quite the range of McQueen, I found Hunnam more believable in terms of portraying and showing vulnerability and strength between himself and Malek. Yet, I preferred McQueen’s portrayal of Henri’s mental and physical breakdown during solitary confinement from his mind to his teeth. Hunnam lost around 35 pounds for this role where I couldn’t find anything about McQueen weight loss. I preferred Hoffman’s performance in that his unassuming and non-threatening manner on which he played Louis was done in an understated way that you forget it’s him. While this was done superbly, I missed some of the rare opportunities found in Malek’s portrayal of Louis such as the result of when you agitate him one too many times. While Hoffman and McQueen played characters who became friends because they were forced at first, I felt Malek and Hunnam were better able to portray their character’s friendship out of convenience at first and then because they truly wanted it by the end. I would say both were compelling and convincing, but overall I preferred Hunnam and Malek’s performances.
Which Butterfly Had the Prettier Wings?
While the story was the same, there were some notable differences between the versions. Much of it had to do with the different time periods, but maybe also how the director envisioned the movie. Leprosy was incorporated in the original, but it doesn’t hold as much weight compared to today so I assume they took it out to make it a little more modern. The scene where Henri and Louis work together to fight an alligator is not in the remake yet had held some importance as it kept them together as prisoners. While the settings are richer in terms of color in the remake, there is less connection to the native animals or animals. There was more of an effort to incorporate a connection to the outside world in terms of loved ones in the remake as Dega longs for his wife and freedom to see her again. The original had Henri facing his demons with a panel of judges telling him he was guilty. I preferred the remake where it was more creative of him visualizing a safe and the meaning of it in his life. There was also a nod to his Parisian lifestyle that you hardly got in the original. The special effects were better as well such as the blood. It looked less like a combination of ketchup and food coloring. There were some scenes that could have been eliminated in the original. Therefore in terms of overall production, I preferred the 2017 version over the 1973.
As I bring this to a close, this movie had mixed reviews among top critics and viewers. While I would have liked to seen more closure about what happened with Nenette in the remake, it signals the fact most of the prisoners once released never returned to France. The biggest issue with the original was the length. After the book was released, the French government invited Henri back. He died in 1973, almost being 67 years old. Charles Brunier who claims he was the inspiration for Papillon died in 2007. He lived much longer at the age of 105.
Most of us struggle with our weight unless you’re one of the fortunate ones who like to exercise like crazy and watch their weight like hawks. This made me think of the actors and actresses who lost or gained quite a bit of weight for a role. There are pros and cons to this. It’s usually once in a lifetime role. It could get you an Oscar (they love a good drama and even better if it is based on a real person). It could also cause you health issues during and after. It leaves you hungry most of all during the filming process. While I don’t recommend quick weight loss for anyone because then the chance is greater to gain it all back, even more for those who yo-yo with their weight, actors and actresses will and can do their own thing. It is part of their job so to speak. I’m sure they play mind games with themselves and convince themselves they aren’t hungry. I know I’ve done that before. Here are some impressive ones who lost or gained weight for a role (maybe a little too much for some) and not an all exhaustive list by any means.
Just one more cheeseburger, please!
*** Robert De Niro gained around 60 pounds for Raging Bull where he plays boxer, Jake LaMotta. He also had to be in tip shape during LaMotta’s prime so he deserves top prize.
** Charlize Theron gained around 30 pounds for Monster where she plays a serial killer, Aileen Wuornos.
** Eric Bana gained around 28 pounds for Chopper where he plays a prisoner, Mark Read.
** Christian Bale gained around 40 pounds for American Hustle where he plays a con artist.
** Renee Zellweger gained between 20 to 30 pounds for Bridget Jones Diary where she plays a reporter.
** Jared Leto gained between 60 to 65 pounds for Chapter 27 where he plays John Lennon’s killer, Mark Chapman.
** Benicio del Toro gained around 45 pounds for Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas where he plays Dr. Gonzo.
** Gwyneth Paltrow gained around 20 pounds for Country Strong where she plays an alcoholic singer.
** George Clooney gained around 30 pounds for Syriana where he plays a terrorist.
** Russell Crowe gained around 63 pounds for Body of Lies where he plays a CIA agent .
While we never saw it on the big screen, Ryan Gosling got really big for Lovely Bones. So, sometimes gaining weight doesn’t get you the role you really wanted as it went to Mark Wahlberg. What can we learn from all this weight gain of actors and actresses? If you want to gain weight quickly, don’t work out and eat tons of sugar, dairy, and fried food. I’m talking ice cream, doughnuts, cupcakes, potato chips, cheese, candy, burgers, fries, other saturated fats, and beer. Obviously, I’m not recommending this by any means.
No more addicting and good tasting food!
*** Christian Bale lost around 63 pounds for The Machinist where he is an insomniac. He has had to gain and lose weight for many of his roles so he deserves top prize.
** Natalie Portman lost around 20 pounds for the movie Black Swan where she plays a ballet dancer.
** Matthew McConaughey lost around 50 pounds for the movie Dallas Buyers Club where he plays a man with AIDS.
** 50 Cent lost around 50 pounds for Things Fall Apart where he plays a football player who has cancer.
** Anne Hathaway lost around 25 pounds for Les Misérables where she plays a prostitute dying of tuberculosis.
** Jake Gyllenhaal lost around 30 pounds for Nightcrawler where he plays a freelance journalist.
** Adam Driver lost around 30 pounds for Silence where he plays a Jesuit priest.
** Mila Kunis lost around 20 pounds for Black Swan where she plays a ballet dancer.
** Tom Hanks lost around 26 pounds for Philadelphia where he plays man dying of AIDS.
** Chris Hemsworth lost around 33 pounds for In the Heart of the Sea where he plays a seafarer.
As you probably know, extreme weight loss in a short amount of time is never a good thing. It doesn’t look all that good either on a person. You might be wondering why I’m writing about this. It’s a reminder not to be so gluttonous when it comes to food. It’s a hard thing to overcome. Most people battle it until they die. So again, what can we learn from all this weight loss of actors and actresses? If you want to lose weight quickly, work out (not too heavy with the weights) and don’t eat tons of sugar, dairy, and fried food. I’m talking almonds, carrots, apples, tuna, dried oatmeal paste, liquid diets, pills, cleanses, and the ever hard don’t eat method (if you are an actor or actress above needing to lose weight for a role). Most people aren’t willing to go to these extremes, but if we are being honest with ourselves, we still need to make some sacrifices and not eat so damn much. I know it’s easy to throw around words and advice and wisdom. It’s much harder to do it, but does it really need to be THAT hard. I don’t think so, but check back in six months. Then, I’ll really know, but hopefully not AGAIN.
Quote from Macbeth by Lady Macbeth: “This is the very painting of your fear.”
Producers: Jenny Borgars, Iain Canning, Olivier Courson, Laura Hastings-Smith, Danny Perkins, Rosa Romero, Tessa Ross, Emile Sherman, Andrew Sherman, Andrew Warren, Bob Weinstein, and Harvey Weinstein
Director: Justin Kurzel
Writers: Todd Louiso, Jacob Koskoff, Michael Lesslie (screenplay) and William Shakespeare (play)
Major Cast: Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard, Paddy Considine, Selyan Baxter, Scot Greenan, Sean Harris, and Elizabeth Debicki
Rating: R for violence and brief sexuality
Running Time: 1 hour and 53 minutes
Macbeth is one of the numerous plays adapted into movies and written by William Shakepeare. Unlike his comedies and histories, this is one of his popular tragedies. It centers around Macbeth, played Michael Fassbender, and his wife, played by Marion Cotillard, who find themselves spiraling down into mental anguish because of their own doing. This adaptation focuses on the connection between being a soldier during a time when swords were used in battle and the personal trauma that occurs once he returns home. In addition to this, Macbeth finds a new purpose when he is told by three women he will be given the title of Thane of Cawdor. He is persuaded to further his position at Lady Macbeth insistence, which leads him down a dangerous path. As his delusions make him do things he normally would not have done, it leads into further internal conflict and unrest. He may have washed the blood from his hands, but he continues to find enemies everywhere and no one is safe. There are battles between people, with words and swords. There are consequences for most everyone. While this is a tried and true story, you watch this for the performances, but would have liked to seen a little more screen time in some of the pivotal scenes.