TWELFTH NIGHT brings the delight and trickery of Shakespeare’s comedy from the stage to the cinema with accuracy and realism. It uses breathtaking cinematography to laugh at human foolishness. When a ship is wrecked, two survivors rush to save each others’ lives. These two are twins, brother and sister. Viola is carried to the island of Illyria , which is at war with her homeland. To survive, Viola decides to disguise herself as a male servant, Cesario. The Duke of Illyria is in love with the countess Olivia , so Viola as Cesario is sent to court the lovely Olivia for the Duke. The love triangles grow more and more intertwined and complicated with the theme of youthful love at the center of the jest.
The director has fulfilled Shakespeare’s vision for the drama inherent in this comedy of supposed errors and misdirected passions. The movie is presented in a naturalistic style which maintains the intimate feeling of a stage performance. The characters are perfectly cast. Shakespearean comedies were written in an age of strong Christian influence, so there are few objectionable elements in the plot. However, some may be disturbed by the gender switching theme and some characters do drink very heavily. Staying true to Shakespeare’s text, the flowery and stylized language will be difficult for some.