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HAMLET X

(James Clayden, Australia, 2003)


 


In this digital film made by Melbourne artist James Clayden, there are dread-filled images reminiscent of the gruesome crime shows that are so popular on our television screens: a man's naked body on the floor; a starkly neon-lit tram stop; a woman looking into the camera and undressing; two men standing over a third, interrogation-style; the grainy flash of a small child's face; an abandoned loft that seems to simultaneously receive and empty out all who pass through it.

However, the narrative of sex, violence and power comes to us in splinters – is it remembered, dreamed, reconstructed? – as does the faint echo of Shakespeare's Hamlet.

A powerfully atmospheric and suggestive work, with luminous performances from Helen Hopkins, Tom Wright and Shelley Lasica, and a haunting musical score by Ad Hoc.

MORE Clayden: The Ghost Paintings, With Time to Kill

© Adrian Martin August 2005


Film Critic: Adrian Martin
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