World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Hamlet 2

Article Id: WHEBN0015400276
Reproduction Date:

Title: Hamlet 2  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Skylar Astin, WikiProject Spam/COIReports/2008, Jul 15, Ron Yerxa, Andrew Fleming, Nat Faxon
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Hamlet 2

Hamlet 2
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Andrew Fleming
Produced by Eric Eisner
Leonid Rozhetskin
Aaron Ryder
Written by Andrew Fleming
Pam Brady
Starring Steve Coogan
Catherine Keener
Amy Poehler
David Arquette
Elisabeth Shue
Narrated by Steve Coogan
Music by Ralph Sall
Steve Brown
Cinematography Alexander Gruszynski
Edited by Jeff Freeman
Production
company
L+E Pictures
Bona Fide Productions
ContentFilm International
Distributed by Focus Features
Release dates
  • August 22, 2008 (2008-08-22)
Running time
92 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $9 million
Box office $4.9 million

Hamlet 2 is a 2008 American comedy film directed by Andrew Fleming, written by Fleming and Pam Brady, and starring Steve Coogan, Catherine Keener, Amy Poehler, and David Arquette. It was produced by Eric Eisner, Leonid Rozhetskin, and Aaron Ryder. Hamlet 2 was filmed primarily at a New Mexico high school from September to October 2007. The film premiered at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival and was distributed by Focus Features.

Plot

Dana Marschz is a recovering alcoholic and failed actor who has become a high school drama teacher in Tucson, Arizona, "where dreams go to die". Despite considering himself an inspirational figure, he only has two enthusiastic students, Rand Posin and Epiphany Sellars, and a history of producing poorly received school plays that are essentially stage adaptations of popular Hollywood films (his latest being Erin Brockovich). When the new term begins, a new intake of students are forced to transfer into his class as it is the only remaining arts elective available due to budget cutbacks; they are generally unenthusiastic and unconvinced by Dana’s pretensions, and Dana comes into conflict with Octavio, one of the new students.

Dana is floored when Principal Rocker notifies him that the drama program is to be shut down at the end of the term. Seeking to inspire his students, Dana undertakes to write and produce an original play: a sequel to Hamlet featuring time travel to avoid the deaths of the characters, and new, more controversial content, including the introduction of Jesus Christ as one of the characters, complete with a song-and-dance number titled "Rock Me Sexy Jesus". The kids gradually warm to the project, but Rand – cast as a bi-curious Laertes and overshadowed by Octavio as Hamlet – storms out of the drama group and provides a copy of the play’s script to Principal Rocker, who orders Dana to stop the controversial production.

Dana is further traumatized when his wife Brie leaves him for the uninteresting, but fertile, boarder Gary they had taken into their home to supplement their modest income, and reveals that he himself is infertile. Despondent, Dana falls off the wagon and tries to abandon the project, but his students encourage him to continue, arranging an abandoned warehouse and rave spot, technical assistance, and security being provided by the high school's football and wrestling teams. Dana also learns that the cancellation of the play has become a civil liberties issue encouraged by fanatical ACLU activist Cricket Feldstein. As a result, the play opens to a sold-out house, including a critic from The New York Times. Rand returns to the group, apologizing for his desertion; Dana allows him to return to the role of Laertes.

The play itself initially meets with a mixed reception, due to its controversial content and mangling of the original play; in keeping with a running joke throughout the movie, much of the content revolves around the characters using time travel to mend their troubled relationships with their fathers; it ends with both Elisabeth Shue – whom he is now dating – meeting Dana’s students to prepare for the show's Broadway opening, complete with original cast.

Cast

Production

The play shown within the film was written on deadline for production.[2] The film was budgeted at a little over $9 million.[3] Production began in September 2007 in New Mexico.[4]

Filming took place mainly at West Mesa High School in Albuquerque, where actual students were permitted to perform as extras in the film.[5] Filming concluded on October 31, 2007.[6] The film was executive produced by Albert Berger and Ron Yerxa, who also produced Little Miss Sunshine.[3]

Release

A rough edit of Hamlet 2 was prepared for the 2008 Sundance Film Festival, where it was a late addition, three days prior to its scheduled screening.[3] The film premiered at the festival on January 21, 2008. After the screening, an all-night bidding war took place for rights to distribution, which Focus Features won for $10 million, acquiring worldwide rights to the film.[7] The purchase of Hamlet 2 nearly broke the Sundance record set by Little Miss Sunshine, which sold for $10.5 million in 2006.[3] In wide release, the film grossed roughly half of the rights cost.

The film had a limited release on August 22, 2008, followed by a wide release on August 27. Its UK release was originally scheduled for December 28, 2008, postponed until February 27, 2009, and eventually cancelled.

Home media

The DVD was released December 21, 2008. The DVD includes deleted scenes, an audio commentary, and a sing-along.

Critical reaction

Hamlet 2 received mixed reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes the film has a rating of 62%, based on 142 reviews, with the site's critical consensus reading, "The script's biting premise and Steve Coogan's endearing, off-the-handle performance make Hamlet 2 an hysterical -- if slightly painful -- ride."[8] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 54 out of 100, based on 28 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".

Roger Ebert gave the film 3 out of 4 stars, calling the film "an ideal showcase for the talents of Coogan."[9] The New York Times states that the film "made sure to take shots at Christians, gays, Latinos, Jews, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Elisabeth Shue, one of its lead actresses."[2]

Duane Byrge of The Hollywood Reporter described Hamlet 2 as "a slam-bang patchwork of more inspired comedies, such as Ace Ventura: Pet Detective and Borat." Byrge described the premise as "a twist on the formula of let's-put-on-a-show, with the twist being that no one wants the show." He thought that the screenwriters had put together "a string of gags in a hit-and-miss dither."[10]

References

  1. ^
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ a b c d
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^

External links

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.