Whenever a book, novel or any other text is adapted to film there are many advantages. The Director may choose to use the text as inspiration and give the story or setting their own clever twist, they may choose to be faithful to the text and take every word literally, or they may choose to do something in between where they keep some elements and change some others.
Such is the case in the adaptation of Macbeth by Akira Kurosawa in the Japanese film “Throne of Blood” and the interpretation of Hamlet in the adaptation by Xiaogang Feng in the Chinese film “The Banquet”. Both films are based on western text that has Judeo-Christian ideals and are set in Europe during the medieval and Middle Ages. What makes these films such great adaptations is that the directors change the setting, the words, the time period and even some characters yet the movies still have the feel of the original text and if you see the movies you would be able to identify which text it was based on.
I think taking a text and adapting to a different culture and language is a very difficult thing to do properly but when done successfully it is an amazing feat. Both films that we saw are based on Shakespeare plays, which in themselves are very difficult to interpret even when doing so word for word from the play. However, These two movies move the scenes to Asia and change the language to Chinese and Japanese and the truth is that even though it is in a different language it is actually more understandable than Shakespearean language. The ways the stories play out also make the movies success. Although in The Banquet the characters are changed as well as their motives, the story still lends itself to feel like Hamlet. We still have the murderous uncle, the tormented