Much Ado About Nothing - On Demand - I have been waiting with much anticipation to see this since first learning of this secret project of Josh Whedon's. First, I'm a huge Much Ado About Nothing fan. It is my favorite of all of Shakespeare's works. I own almost all the different versions of this, I'm missing a few but will eventually, hopefully add them to my collection. The movie never played near me to see in the theater, because thats where I would have preferred to see it.
I really enjoyed this updated version, shot with a shoe string budget, with only 12 days to film. A lot of usual Whedon folks grace this film, making it very relatable from the start. Overall the acting is superb, with some real interesting takes on the characters. This movie is why as a whole I really like remakes. They take something familiar, add their own take on it and you have a wholly new and interesting version of something you are intimately familiar with. For me most of the choices really work, the house while being large really makes it intimate. Showing it in black and white, how certain scenes are framed and shot. I also loved the updated version of Sigh No More by Maurissa Tancharoen. After watching the movie, I immediately downloaded the sound track from iTunes. I also liked a lot the switching of Conrad to being a woman. Made the relationship between Don John and Conrad a lot more interesting. There are also some problems with the movie, most notably some performances are lacking. I imagine with the 12 days film shoot, they had a limited amount of takes. Also I disliked the actor who played Claudio, I think if they switched him with the actor who played Borachio things may have been a little better, maybe. The one aspect that I actually didn't like at all was the overt comedy when Benedict and Beatrice where they were "overhearing" how the other loved them. It really pulled me out the movie, like being hit by a train. However they got me back in a big way with the scene where Beatrice asks Benedict to kill Claudio over what happen. That was without a doubt the finest part of the movie. Well acted by Amy Acker and Alexis Denisof.
While I would still say that Kenneth Branagh Much Ado is still my favorite version, I can definitely see myself opting for this on those days when I want to watch it again.