Lady Macbeth

Topics: Macbeth, Elizabethan era, Audience theory Pages: 3 (1825 words) Published: May 17, 2015
Rupert Goold directed the 2010 BBC television film version of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, modifying it from the sixteenth century play to a twenty first century contemporary adaptation, set in a developing Soviet styled country. Shakespeare wrote the play presumably intending to verbally direct the actors on how to perform and in which tone they, should express themselves in. Therefore he did not add many stage directions, leaving no limitations to how the play should be performed. In addition, the adaptation was enhanced by the availability of Mise en Scene, which caused the film to further interest contemporary audiences. Goold’s wife, Kate Fleetwood, is portrayed as Lady Macbeth; an ambitious, seductive and tenacious woman who has the ability to control others to her liking. Lady Macbeth is presented by Goold with characteristics that would attract the attention of a contemporary audience, such as dominance over her spouse and a firm wall of resoluteness. In the Elizabethan era, women were considered inferior to their male counterparts and such a woman as Lady Macbeth would no doubt leave Elizabethan audiences in shock and awe. Moreover, Shakespeare was aware that the Elizabethans were very God-fearing and superstitious, associating women who did anything that seemed unconventional with witchcraft. In the modern era however, a woman such as Lady Macbeth would be look upon with respect rather than fear and not considered unconventional. Therefore Goold’s directional choices on Lady Macbeth include her having distinctive features of what he believes a contemporary audience would find eerie and witchlike. She is depicted as an instrument of evil and a constant figure of fiery wrath, wearing dark costumes and makeup with a pale, gaunt face and a prominent jaw and seen by the audience as a morbid housewife, shrouded in ambition. In Act 1, Scene 5 of the play, when Lady Macbeth receives the letter from Macbeth about the witches and King Duncan, she immediately begins...
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