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Critic Reviews for Coriolanus
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Audience Reviews for Coriolanus
I definitely did like this. . . . Shakespeare's final "tragedy." Hmmm . . .
Okay, let me say this. The label "tragedy" is thrown around an awful lot. For instance, I'll bet one dollar that in years to come there are going to be people who call Bu--sh-- Jr's presidency a tragic one. Now depending on who's doing the talking, this is true. Tragic for us; not tragic for him. If someone eventually sees Jr's administration as a personal tragedy for him -- and believe me someone will -- well, I will laugh -- and then spit on the ground.
In order to qualify as a tragic hero in my book, you damn well better be someone with whom I can sympathize.
In the case of this particular production of Coriolanus, I have great difficulty finding anything about the titular character that makes me even remotely want to feel anything but a mild contempt, at best, for his plight. To pull an old chestnut from the feeble fire of memory: This is a guy who needs killing, and the sooner the better. He is surely no Macbeth, neither is he a Hamlet nor anywhere remotely near an Othello or a Juliet. Coriolanus is a justly heralded soldier, true, but what kind of human being is he? Well he is tragically vain all right, a qualifying tragic flaw, but he is additionally loaded with contempt for the common people, and he's a borderline horrible son, husband, and father to boot. I mean, who cares? I see him more as an oxygen waster than as someone who's actually contributing to the good of humankind. But that's just me.
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