Thursday, July 28, 2005

Angels in America Part Two

I have to say that as amazing as this play is, it is so much more amazing when you actually see it. There are some things that cannot be imagined, they must be seen.

While watching the second part I really noticed the score, by Thomas Newman. The music is just amazing, and gives it an other wordly feel. The scene where Hannah and Joe meet at the Mormon choir’s song was brilliant, and it really added to the the devolpment of their characters to hear the song.

Although it is obvious that this was written as a play, what with conventions such as Hannah (Merly Streep), Belize (Jeffery Wright), Louis (Ben Sheckleman), and Pryor (Justin Kirk) breaking the third wall in the last scene, this play really adapted well to film. It really helped to get a fuller picture of the splendor and vast immensity of heaven. I also liked how when Prior entered heaven virtually everything was colorless. This is something that would be impossible to do in a live production, for obvious reasons. Another scene that really lent itself to film was the over the top funeral of Prior and Belieze’s fabulous Queen friend.

The special effects were great. For example in the scene where Roy Cohen (Al Pacino) dies , the effect of the star on the monitor turning into a shooting star in the sky, really added to the movie. The scene with the angel entering hospital entering the hospital, and blowing the walls apart was more beliveable in a movie. Like wise, Ethel Rosenberg's ghostly effects worked much better in a movie. The only problem that I had with the effects was that the Angel and Pryor's "plasmaorgasm" was a too comical. I get the symbolism, but I couldn't help laughing. There has to be a better way to do that scene.

This does not mean that I don’t think Angels in America works as a live production. Instead, watching the DVD made me want to see it live even more, and certainly to watch it again.

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