Thursday, March 22, 2007

The History Boys

In another fascinating instalment of what I've been doing, I went to the Bloor to see The History Boys last night. I had been dying to see it ever since I spied the poster a couple of weeks ago, resplendent with Tom Quad as it was. Indeed, a handful of wist-inducing shots of Oxford quite made my day. There was also the usual witty Bennett dialogue and a thorough-going air of Britishness which was very comforting and funny. I would have liked more early 80s pop music myself (they tantalized us with the opening bars of Dead or Alive's "Spin Me Round" but never came good on the rest, damn them). More importantly, however, the transition from play to screenplay really hadn't been completed successfully. Lots of the dialogue felt declamatory, and highlighted Hyntner's failure to exploit the opportunities the screen offers for showing the audience something rather than telling them; set-piece dialogues and group scenes were stilted, obviously designed for the formal artifice of the theatre, but grating in the realism of film. And crucially, almost all the shots were far too - well, stagey. The most disastrous manifestation of this was the truly ludicrous way in which the Boys themselves roamed around in a pack - it looked absurd, like a herd of animals (which I appreciate is a not inaccurate way of presenting a congregation of adolescent males of any species, but it was still preposterous).

And why were all eight of them going for Oxford and none for Cambridge? I object solely on the grounds of realism, of course: the foregoing being, on my lips, the essence of the rhetorical question...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

More pictures of Oxford on my flickr account, babes:

It is established that you are coming as my partner. I even got the Bridge to yell "Shut up about it" when I went on and on about being discriminated against as a gay woman in the staff breaktime briefing. (I'm liking the Bridge much better this year).

10:26 pm  

Post a Comment

<< Home