I know, I know… The award for the Lamest Rhyme goes to Shade of Red for the title of this blog post. In truth, since the Internet is full of raving and intimidatingly intellectual reviews of Jude Law’s performance in Shakespeare’s Henry V, I decided I could do no better than sprinkle your Google search with some lighthearted and Christmas-spirited prose on one of my favourite actors.
In my mind, Jude Law is still a lost and melancholic boy from My Blueberry Nights — Wong Kar-Wai’s languorous film about mending broken hearts and saying goodbye to someone you can “never imagine living without”. For almost two hours on screen, Law’s character leans across the bar and longingly stares into Norah’s cherry-black eyes. He has a habit of keeping all lost keys in a jar on the bar because he is afraid that if he threw them away, those doors will be closed for ever.
The moment he kisses Norah, you are left wondering what feels more sensual: his gaze into her eyes or the tiny crumbs of a blueberry pie on her lips.
In Michael Grandage’s production of Shakespeare’s Henry V, Jude Law plays a ruthless leader and a hopeless romantic. One moment he calls for every soldier to “kill his prisoners” and spit “naked infants” upon spikes, the next he jibbers and slurs as he asks Princess Katharine to marry him. “I am glad thou canst speak no better English; for, if thou couldst, thou wouldst find me such a plain king that thou wouldst think I had sold my farm to buy my crown.” Have you ever heard of a clumsier proposal?
Jude Law is so adept at building strong chemistry with his female leads that all across the theatre hall, you can feel Henry’s longing for Katharine’s fragile, aristocratic beauty. In the play, their kiss supposedly seals a new peace with France but in London’s West End, it sends intense ripples of emotion through the crowd.
Mind you, it could be just me — after all, I did find Jude Law’s tight costume rather distracting…
Going back to the lame title of this blog post, to see Jude Law last Saturday at Noel Coward Theatre, I wore my red soles. Because it would have been rude not to.
Also, some seasonal hosiery with intricate holly leaves was in order.
By the way, do you know that you can now subscribe to updates on Shade of Red Facebook page? Sign up, I am waiting right here, under the Christmas tree.