Much Ado About Nothing (*****)
The Bard and the Joss
Lovers and villains
A beautiful play
POSSIBLE SPOILERS AHEAD. (But really, you should know Much Ado About Nothing.) The Mister and I have been trying to see this movie since it premiered at South By Southwest back in March. It finally opened nationwide this past weekend, and we (and TGG and his wife) jumped at the chance to get to see it on the big screen. It did not disappoint.
This version of Much Ado About Nothing—a play originally written by William Shakespeare—was adapted by Joss Whedon and filmed with a bunch of his friends over the course of a few days ... at Joss' house. The film is a modern version of the play, but only in setting; the original iambic pentameter is used throughout. This might turn some people off, but I love how well such an old and unfamiliar language can be understood through good acting. The basic story is about misunderstandings, revelry and the power of love. It features a variety of characters, both comedic and dramatic, and a happy ending (after a bit of tragedy in the middle.) The entire film is also in black and white, which makes it feel artsy, but not in a pretentious way.
A lot of familiar faces (mostly all from other Whedon shows/movies) fill the movie's roles—Clark Gregg, Alexis Denisof, Amy Acker, Fran Kranz, Sean Maher, Tom Lenk and Nathan Fillion, to name a few—and they all do an amazing job at the centuries old roles. Alexis, Sean and Nathan (who play Benedick, Don John and Dogberry, respectively), however, were my favorites. (Nathan is so good at being ridiculous.)
I'd definitely recommend this film to anyone who's a Shakespeare fan, a Whedon fan, or, like me, a fan of both!