Saturday evening I went to a production of Peter Sellars' retelling of Othello at the NYU Skirball Center. It starred John Ortiz in the title role and Philip Seymour Hoffman as Iago, which was completely perfect because PSH kind of makes my skin crawl anyway. I don't know, I'm really bothered by him, always have been, so it was fitting to see him in one of the most detestable roles Shakespeare ever wrote. I ended up with front row seats but at least a third of the audience left anyway. What I gathered from the British theatre snob who complained loudly and he exited, was that it was a combination of terrible acting, the actors being wired with mics and uninspired staging. I couldn't agree more that most of the (4 1/2 hour) play consisted of shouting into mics, completely unnecessary, well, ever but especially in that relatively small theatre. Jessica Chastain's pure portrayal of Desdemona was nice and the giant bed made out of TV screens that was the set was really cool, but I could do without ever having to sit through a tediously long White House-centered, semi-political, racially charged adaptation of one of Shakespeare's greatest works again. Especially when I'm close enough to get hit with PSH's spit. Yes, Obama is in the White House, things are changing and Shakespeare is timeless but I would have much preferred that message in an engaging and subtle context rather than to be smacked across the face with it. To each her own.
Because I was so close to IFC and can't resist an opportunity to go, I talked Candace and Sam L. into seeing the midnight screening of The Shining with me post-Othello.
Friends, I don't care how brave you think you are. Never, never ever go see a print of The Shining at midnight on a dreary, rainy night at a theatre that is renowned for its superior presentation. Ever.
Needless to say, the three of us shared a cab home.
Sunday was spent doing the usual Sunday family stuff. B doesn't have school today so our friends (the family with six kids that go to his school) invited him to spend the night and go with them to the Bronx Zoo today while I'm a work. The kids are all really sweet, well behaved and smart, and there are three boys all around his age, so I feel great about him being friends with them. He's never spent the night with anyone who wasn't family or Jaren, so this new territory for us. I missed him a lot but I schlepped my laptop up to Bobst library, pirated a conference room for Candace and I and got my entire first paper written and turned in four days early (at 4:00 this morning)! Go me.
Now I'm off to inject caffeine into my jugular and take my second film splicing test. Yay Monday!