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Frankenstein [Blu-ray] [Import]
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The creature's solo and duets are the best part of the ballet, because that is when Liam Scarlett seems to come up with some interesting and new choreography. In contrast, the corps scenes (party dancing) is very flat and dull. You are left wondering, "How is this advancing the story?" If a big ballet sequence does not advance the story, then it should at least stun you with how beautiful or "cool" the patterns of the corps are. Or make you say, "Wow!" at the innovative steps. All the corps scenes fall flat, in my opinion. You are left thinking, "I want to find out what happens next! Enough of this!" Like I said, I think I would have been fine with the party dancing if it felt innovative or created amazing patterns. I suspect Liam Scarlett's weakness is that he doesn't know how to choreograph for large groups.
The final act sets and costumes contrast sharply with the first two acts. Up until the final act the sets and costumes were ultra realistic and conservative and suddenly in Act 3 the sets look like a dreamscape.....almost surreal and abstract.......I guess it is supposed to convey how Victor Frankenstein's mind is sort of troubled by that point.
Overall, I think this is an "okay" attempt, but Scarlett needs to rethink it and flesh out the choreography for the creature. I feel like his creation when Victor realizes what he has done needed a little dancing and then later when they first meet face-to-face after the creature ran off there should have been more dancing. The final duet between the Creature and Elizabeth and then between the Creature and Victor was exciting and explored the Creature's desire for love and acceptance, but that was not explored enough in earlier scenes. I just feel like this was a missed opportunity at a really great ballet mainly because the choreography was so conservative.
I also think the corps choreography should be much better. I can't imagine any of the corps scenes being done as a set piece in a gala in the future. They would put the audience of a gala to sleep. In fact, most of the choreography would not be great as an excerpt to dance in a gala, except maybe the Creature's solo. Although a set piece for a gala is not what a choreographer should aim for, I mention that to basically say that the choreography just doesn't impress enough. If there were moments of "Wow! That was amazing!" the ballet would more likely stay in the canon of ballet. For me the Creature's scenes contain the only interesting choreography and those scenes are few and far between.