Oh’phelia (1919)

Oh’phelia (1919)
Article 5553 by Dave Sindelar
Date: 6-11-2018
Directed by Anson Dyer
No cast
Country: UK
What it is: Shakespeare….maybe

Ophelia is driven mad by Hamlet… or was it the snail that did it?

Any adaptation of “Hamlet” that jettisons the ghost runs the risk of having its fantastic content removed, but then I’m not sure this is really an adaptation of the classic work; an irreverent reworking with a touch of the surreal is a better description. Sure, I remember the part where Hamlet drives Ophelia mad, but I don’t remember the part where he becomes a boy scout and saves her life. The scene in the queen’s bedroom is changed to that of the queen’s kitchen, Laertes looks like a western desperado, Claudius suffers from gout, and a censor is on hand to make sure the word that begins with “bloo” is acceptable to all ages. Furthermore, there are a few touches of the fantastic to the proceedings, including a tree with a face and a snail shell that puts out its own “for rent” sign. Quite frankly, I was delighted by this bizarre animated short, and I hope to see more work from Anson Dyer. Recommended.

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