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a+c @ DIFF 2013:  Chasing Shakespeare

a+c @ DIFF 2013: Chasing Shakespeare

DIFF_logoArts+Culture Magazine at the Dallas International Film Festival 2013

The most poignant line in “Chasing Shakespeare” is easily “Love is the electricity that flows in all of us.”  A love story with a metaphysical spin and a lot of electricity since it just so happens that Danny Glover’s character, cialis William Ward, doctor is married to a Native American woman named Venus who is from, generic appropriately, the Lightning Clan.

Chasing Shakespeare.
Chasing Shakespeare.

Glover and Graham Greene shine along with a cast of up and comers who indeed serve to create moments in this film that become an “enchanting love story.” Glover’s character and his wife Venus in the opening of the film has the two engrossed in Shakespeare as she lies dying.  Proving the ultimate act of love he wheels her bed outside under a tree where she can die in a storm.  As the movie unfolds Glover’s character is on a continual search to reunite with the woman he loves after her death.

Director Norry Niven is a Texas native who studied film at the University of Texas at Arlington. While he lived in Los Angeles for a time, he came back to Texas and formed Stone Core Films, a commercial production company, as well as Three-One-O, a separate commercial production company based in Los Angeles.

This is his feature film directorial debut, but it’s easy to see by his directorial choices that he is certainly not a neophyte to the business of filmmaking.

The script, of course, hits all the problems and passions one has come to expect in feature films these days from a son who is angry at this father for letting his mother die without getting her treatment to a look at the culture and tradition of Venus’ mystical clan.

Chasing Shakespeare.
Chasing Shakespeare.

During the course of the film too, we learn that Venus is a Shakespeare fan and knows all his work inside and out, as the film progresses the through line is “Romeo and Juliet.” The film is set up in a series of flashbacks as William remembers when he met Venus (as she was auditioning for “Romeo and Juliet” in high school) and we also see the relationship he has with her family and then her move to New York City where he eventually follows her.

One of the greatest moments of the film is when Venus and one of her thespian friends in New York City perform a street rendition of Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” complete with lighting and storms.

William finds Venus in New York successfully and they move back home, but in between “Chasing Shakespeare” is emotionally charged offering good directing, acting and cinematography.  It’s the journey of these two lovers (with a bit of help from Greene’s character who is always there and never ages aka, perhaps the “Great Spirit”) all this allowing the viewer to believe in a true love connection.

—RITA COOK


Chasing Shakespeare
Angelika Film Center, Dallas
April 11, 2013 at 7:00 p.m.
April 12, 2013 at 7:15 p.m.

The 2013 Dallas International Film Festival screens over 175 film through April 14 at various venues around town.

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