‘Hamlet’ review: ‘Grand Theft Auto’ meets Shakespeare in this video game documentary

There’s no more mismatched theme than a Shakespearean tragedy and a guy in a silly hat firing a rocket launcher at a police helicopter. However, grand theft auto hamlet Explore a unique blend of past and present while revealing new and unexpected layers of narrative at every turn.Animated documentary follows two actors’ ill-advised attempts to stage a full-length production village In the world of video games; the results are hilarious and surprisingly touching.

This year’s SXSW Documentary Jury Prize Winner— Disclosure: This critic is one of the jurists—— grand theft auto hamlet It also happens to be a film about the coronavirus lockdown, and it captures its absurdity in a way that few recent films have. It’s a story about video games, but it’s also a story about community and finding new ways to connect emotionally, and while exploring those ideas, it covers all aspects of emotion.

It is a unique synthesis of forms that creatively addresses the topic of artistic frustration while reflecting on death in the silliest of ways. It’s both thoughtful and brash, and by the end of just 89 minutes – brevity is the soul of intelligence, after all – the film succeeds against all odds and proves to be a complete and utter blast.

what is grand theft auto hamlet about?

The movie starts off in an ordinary way”let’s Play“—that is, footage presented in-game while others play the game—focuses on a pair of casual gamers passing the time by committing violent crimes and evading the police, as encouraged in The Game Grand Theft Auto. While watching other people play video games has become a streaming cottage industry, it doesn’t seem like the most interesting way to make a feature film. However, grand theft auto hamlet This idea was quickly abandoned.

The concept behind this movie is inherently ridiculous and harkens back to that era red and bluethe popular (and still ongoing) science fiction web series that began production in 2003 and is animated entirely within the world of a first-person shooter halo. However, grand theft auto hamletThe appeal isn’t just limited to the hardcore gaming crowd.Its original footage was intended to introduce non-gamers to goofy hyper-violence Grand Theft AutoSam Crane and Mark Oosterveen are a pair of lively, out-of-work British stage actors and jokers who stumble upon one of the amphitheaters in the game (“Good Wooden Bowl”, modeled after the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles).Soon after, inspiration struck and they decided to see how they could stage a full production village In this shared online metaverse.

What initially appears to be a one-off YouTube clip quickly becomes riveting as the film begins documenting the subjects’ attempts to audition and rehearse in-house. grand theft auto online (this Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game Part Grand Theft Auto V; emphasize”role playing game”). All footage in the film was captured within the game itself. The film, co-directed by Crane and his romantic partner, filmmaker Pinny Grylls, draws from multiple Freely swinging in perspective and unbound by physical space, Pinny Grylls not only acts as an observer and digital archivist, but also enters the game as a participant. A role alongside Crane and Oostfen. Ultimately, She herself became one of the main subjects of the film.

After the leading duo put out a flurry of calls on digital message boards, they’ve finally found some potential collaborators – whether they’re other eager performers, newbie gamers looking to keep busy during lockdown, or just don’t quite get it Curious onlookers as to what they were trying, but agreeing anyway. Given the nature of the game, the simple task of staging a show and engaging audiences and participants proved to be very difficult. As they assembled other actors in this digital space, each delivering monologues through headphones while their avatars repeated a limited series of gestures, the world’s police and other online players often disrupted Crane and Ostevin’s Peaceful gathering. Grand Theft Auto It’s an essentially hedonistic world, and there’s nothing to stop some random third party from showing up who’s just looking for a thrill to shoot (or punch). These frequent interruptions resulted in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern sighing in resignation each time they died at the unexpected pairing and had to be reborn somewhere inconvenient and far away before returning to the digital stage .

it is drama camp meet Punisher: War ZoneIt’s a weird, zany production that blends good-natured creativity with cartoonish hyper-violence, placing many unique logistical obstacles in the actor’s path.

grand theft auto hamlet is a truly unique lockdown film.

Much of it was filmed in early 2021, when London was going through its third major COVID-19 lockdown. grand theft auto hamlet Tracing the evolution of its central concept from a product of boredom to a sincere and widespread passion project. For months, the production’s attempts and failures to stage it have taken on increasingly frustrating forms, not just because of the logistics of a world like this – how to build a peaceful community in a space filled with bullets and bombs. Experience? — but also due to real-world logistics.

Anyone with minimal high school stage experience is likely to recognize the complexities involved, as well as the manner in which Crane and Oostfen—the disembodied voices emerging from the mouths of digital avatars—politely address each issue. From potential performers turning down auditions for the Vinewood Bowl, to trying to convince people of their vision, to balancing people’s real-world schedules when deciding when and where to practice in-game. grand theft auto hamlet The result is a shockingly accurate depiction of the many obstacles that arise in the world of amateur theatre, albeit with the added drawback of pranksters disrupting rehearsals only to beat the actors or blow them to smithereens. This part is unfamiliar to the performers, and it keeps them on their toes while also making the entire exercise feel like cabin fever-induced madness.

The deeper Crane and Oostfen go into their stage, the more complicated things become. Soon it became a touring production within the game’s world, as curious viewers were asked to follow the actors between multiple dangerous locations, such as on top of a floating airship, a creative ambition that was sure to lead to self-sabotage. Because the actor’s incarnation died from a side fracture accident midway through the performance.However, they spent more time trying to spice up their version villagethe more the real world begins to creep in from the corners of the picture.

Society does not remain stagnant forever, and when circumstances change, actors are bound to be pulled in different directions. However, a key element of the show is also the relationship between the show’s two directors, and how their different personal lives (Crane is a family man; Ostevin more of a loner) intersects with the film’s premise.The pandemic and its subsequent lockdowns are affecting people in different ways, but what grand theft auto hamlet manages to capture how people emerge from the pandemic mindset at different times, and how this difference can strain relationships in the process.

The romantic relationship between Crane and Grylls is also a key part of the film, with Grylls seemingly acting out key conversations between them in the game’s world, despite them living in the same household. It’s hardly naturalistic, but it uses the same creative logic as modern reality television, where real tensions and interpersonal dynamics are heightened under the watchful eye of the audience. The key difference is that this relationship drama is also ultimately at the mercy of the game’s mechanics, blurring the lines between public and private moments in extremely interesting ways.

However, these mechanics also provide a unique contrast to the current topic.

grand theft auto hamlet This is a surprisingly poignant reflection on death.

Between the film’s pandemic premise and its subject’s reflection on one of Shakespeare’s most weighty texts, grand theft auto hamlet The concept of death—what it means to “be or not be”—is echoed in several quiet ways—while the piercing sounds of explosions continually interrupt the actors’ rehearsals.

Perhaps there is no more surreal space to reflect on death than in video games, where violence is so pervasive and cartoonish that people become desensitized to it as bodies are tossed in different directions. It’s just a recurring annoyance. Yet this context of casual brutality also forces the play’s horrific themes of revenge and cosmic necessity to the surface, functioning as a high-level reenactment of the text through comic depictions of deadly violence—intentional or not.

If any, medium Grand Theft Auto What ends up being the perfect spoonful of sugar for Shakespeare’s enduring, brooding medicine. The unfolding of dramatic subtext turns the film in the process into an inadvertent act of art criticism, in which exaggeratedly customized player avatars, with bright hair and superhero costumes, serve as both de facto philosophers and The actor’s deeply personal externalization. ‘Personas and neuroses.

One character in particular, a North African immigrant unfamiliar with the show, was auditioned using Quranic verses while appearing as a bright green alien. It’s as if he’s both disguised himself and created a cartoonish representation of his feelings as a newcomer to British society, in what ends up being one of the film’s most moving reflections of the human experience.

The film maintains an razor-thin line between life and death, not only because the digital avatars in the game can easily be reduced to a bloody mush, but also because these violent images cause the actors to dive headlong into textual analysis and repetition every time. rehearse. The act of performing — channeling emotion and transforming it into art — is one of the most vivid, human, and alive. live A process that we are capable of completing. Therefore, performing while traditional performance space is being snatched away is actually a defiance, confronting a deadly plague in the most noisy way possible.nothing compares grand theft auto hamlet.

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