Thursday, 1 August 2013

"Breaking Bad" and "Ozymandias": Movies, TV, and Poems II

My son and I watched the first few episodes of the show Breaking Bad, and he went on to watch all the rest. I found them too depressing to watch. That is sometimes the problem with making something too good: It may depress the heck out of its potential audience.

I mention the show because I had put up a posting on poetry used in movies and on TV. The trailer for Breaking Bad's last season would have fitted that posting perfectly.
The poem in the trailer, for anyone who did not have to memorize it in high school, is "Ozymandias" by Percy Bysshe Shelley. The BBC discusses the trailer here.

Another fine example of poetry in a movie is from the last James Bond film, Skyfall. Here, M recites the ending of Tennyson's "Ulysses." Quite appropriate, since the movie's theme, like the poem's, is how to react to age and the decline of one's powers.
Here is an inspired recital of Lewis Carroll's "Jabberwocky" from Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. True, not all the words are there, and those that are, are sometimes in the wrong order, but Johnny Depp's Scottish accent here adds a sinister, menacing touch that makes up for any flaws.
Finally, here is the wonderful Emma Thompson reading "Holy Sonnet X" ("Death, Be Not Proud), by John Donne, which ends the movie Wit.

1 comment:

  1. You know, I thought it was fun for me and convenient for the reader to link to Youtube clips in my posts. I see, though, that _every_single_video has disappeared in the short time that my post has been up. Well, I may still link to a video or two, but I'll make darn sure that I describe it, so people can search up an equivalent, and I won't do it as often. Grrr. It's annoying because I would say that having these short clips on Youtube and having links to them in my posts count as "fair use" under US law. Once again, Grrrr.