Much Ado About Nothing (2012)

Much Ado About Nothing (2012)

Much Ado About Nothing (2012)

Joss Whedon’s (The Avengers, Buffy) low-budget contemporary adaptation of Shakespeare’s romantic comedy, filmed in black and white over a couple of weekends. Stars Whedon regulars Amy Acker, Nathan Fillion, Alexis Denisof, Reed Diamond, Fran Kranz and Clark Gregg.

Leonato (Gregg), the governor of Messina, is visited by his friend Don Pedro (Diamond) who is returning from a victorious campaign against his rebellious brother Don John. Accompanying Don Pedro are two of his officers: Benedick and Claudio (Denisof and Kranz). While in Messina, Claudio falls for Leonato’s daughter Hero, while Benedick verbally spars with Beatrice (Acker), the governor’s niece. The budding love between Claudio and Hero prompts Don Pedro to arrange a marriage.

In the days leading up to the ceremony, Don Pedro, with the help of Leonato, Claudio and Hero, attempts to sport with Benedick and Beatrice in an effort to trick the two into falling in love. Meanwhile, the villainous Don John, with the help of his allies Conrade and Borachio, plots against the happy couple, using his own form of trickery to try to destroy the marriage before it begins. A series of comic and tragic events continue to keep the two couples from truly finding happiness, but then again perhaps love may prevail.

2012Rating: M, Sex scenes, drug references107 minsUSA
ComedyDramaRomance
Director:
Joss Whedon ('The Avengers', 'Serenity', 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer')
Writer:
Joss Whedon
Cast:
Amy AckerAlexis DenisofReed DiamondClark GreggFran KranzSean MaherJillian MorgeseNathan Fillion

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Much Ado About Nothing (2012) / Reviews

Flicks, Rebecca Barry Hill

Flicks, Rebecca Barry Hill

Much Ado has been done on the small screen several times, and cinema audiences were treated to a memorable traditional version with Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson in 1993. But none are as cool as this. Joss Whedon’s contemporary take on Shakespeare’s classic comedy, shot in black and white with a sexy vintage wardrobe, has a wit and style you won’t find in his kick-ass work for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly or The Avengers.

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Variety

Variety

An inspired example of Shakespeare-on-a-shoestring.

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Total Film

Total Film

A breezy but heartfelt Shakespear update that should put a smile on the faces of Whedon fans, Bard worshippers and anyone in the mood for a sharp, sassy romance.

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Time Out

Time Out

The movie feels like too much of a lark. To paraphrase the play’s voice of reason, Friar Francis, it would be better if Whedon paused awhile and let his counsel sway us more.

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The New York Times

The New York Times

From its very first scenes, Mr. Whedon's film crackles with a busy, slightly wayward energy that recalls the classic romantic sparring of the studio era.

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The Guardian

The Guardian

But Whedon's key coup is in simply directing a very good version of the play. He's got a keen ear for comedy, a no-nonsense approach to ditching the gags that don't work, a deft hand for slapstick and an eagerness to use it.

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Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone

Whedon, without skimping on the tale’s tragic undercurrents, has crafted an irresistible blend of mirth and malice.

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Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

A host of Whedon veterans puts on one of the funniest Shakespeare films in ages.

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Empire Magazine

Empire Magazine

It will require no conspiring to make you fall for this one; Whedon and Shakespeare are a perfect match.

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A.V. Club

A.V. Club

So kudos to the cast of Much Ado About Nothing, Joss Whedon’s scrappy, snappy take of one of Shakespeare’s greatest comedies. With little exception, the players assembled here — most of them veterans of the Whedonverse — pull off that difficult balancing act with gusto.

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Much Ado About Nothing (2012) / Trailers