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It is a detail that adds to the atmosphere of decadence, also conveyed in the nightclub scenes, which are straight out of Cabaret. Alexander Hanson is believable as Bassanio, a man who is possibly bi-sexual.
Portia is arguably the most complex character in this drama, and is very effectively portrayed by Derbhle Crotty. Not only is she Portia the wealthy heiress, but she also assumes the disguise of a lawyer to go in aid of Antonio. Should he forfeit the pound of flesh to which he agreed in his bond with Shylock?
As the lawyer, Portia is relentless in her pursuit of justice. She turns the tables on Shylock, who at first thought this lawyer to be his advocate, his Daniel. The turning point of the drama occurs when Shylock commands the lawyer, whom he thinks is his advocate, to carry out the law. He thus seals his own fate.
There is a troubling aspect of Portia that is changed in this production. Although she is pursued by many wealthy men, she hopes that Bassanio will become her husband by choosing the correct casket—and he does.
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She gives him a ring and has him swear an oath that he will never remove the ring. The production is handsomely mounted production design by Hilda Bechtler and effectively filmed. The camera watches closely—we are there, near the action. Nunn and Hunt have made this play accessible, even acceptable where it had become untouchable.
Larry Campbell Oct 10, Also in Television.
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ISBN 13: 9781604138856
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About Harold Bloom. Harold Bloom. Since the publication of his first book in , Bloom has written more than 20 books of literary criticism, several books discussing religion, and one novel.
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He has edited hundreds of anthologies. Other books in the series. Bloom's Shakespeare Through the Ages 1 - 10 of 19 books.