Cinema: King Leer, Wild Kate

The Taming of the Shrew. "We intend to make Shakespeare as successful a screenwriter as Abby Mann." Thus spake Director Franco Zeffirelli last year when he began filming The Taming of the Shrew. The screen credits maintain the mock-the-bard tone: script billing goes to Zeffirelli, Paul Dehn and Suso Checchi D'Amico, with a coy acknowledgment "to William Shakespeare, without whom we would have been at a loss for words." The irreverence in this case is less a shame than a sham. Despite the disclaimer, Zeffirelli has succeeded in mounting the liveliest screen incarnation of Shakespeare since Olivier's Henry V.

A salty salvo...

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