Gwyneth Paltrow - Critics Fall For Shakespeare In Love
The theatrical version of the 1998 film, which starred Paltrow alongside Joseph Fiennes and Dame Judi Dench, opened at the Noel Coward Theatre in London on Wednesday night (23Jul14) and won a standing ovation from critics.
The Guardian's Michael Billington praises Shakespeare In Love for successfully transferring from the big screen and transcending the cinema, writing, "I've often attacked our modern mania for turning movies into plays. But, in the case of Shakespeare in Love, the transformation is fully justified... (This) new version is a love letter to theatre itself... This is a play that stands on its own two feet."
The London Evening Standard's Henry Hitchings gives the show five stars out of five and applauds the lead actors, Lucy Briggs-Owen and Tom Bateman, for taking over the roles made famous by Paltrow and Fiennes.
He writes, "While they may not eclipse the memory of Joseph Fiennes and Gwyneth Paltrow, there's an easy chemistry between the tousled, rather earnest Bateman and Lucy Briggs-Owen... There are rich laughs, flickers of mischief and peachy spurts of surrealism. A few heavy-handed moments aside, Shakespeare in Love has a fizzy, infectious exuberance."
Paul Taylor of The Independent also awards the play five stars, along with The Daily Telegraph's full marks review, which adds, "At a time when so many stage shows are based on films, it is odd that it has taken so long for Shakespeare in Love to arrive in the West End. But boy has it been worth the wait... The Oscar-laden movie... was terrific, but in (director) Lee Hall's delightful stage adaptation the piece seems to have found its true home."