After interpreting Act 1 Scene 3 of Hamlet, we all decided to do two different interpretations of the scene focusing on the aspect or theme of Polonius’ family dynamic. The first interpretation is set in modern times where we see Polonius’ children a little bit indifferent and emotionally isolated towards their Father. We decided to portray Polonius as the typical business man who is mostly focused on his personal affairs over the feelings or events going on in his children’s life, unless it could affect his reputation or personal gain. In a sense, this interpretation gives Polonius an emotionally negligent air. As a result of this character representation, the audience gets to view the stronger relationship Laertes has with his young and very naive sister, Ophelia. As Laertes leaves, he expresses a deep concern for Ophelia’s romantic involvement with Hamlet and gives her advice on how to avoid getting hurt by him. The difference between his counsel and that of his father’s is that Laertes breaks the truth of hamlet to her in a tone that expresses concern, whereas Polonius is more stern and ridicules Ophelia for her feelings. Another aspect of this interpretation is that Polonius lacks empathy and compassion towards the fact that his only son is leaving and it could very well be the last time he ever sees his son.
In the second interpretation, we decided to focus on a better and more emotionally supportive relationship between Polonius and his children. Here, Ophelia is less whimsical and doesn’t have such a prominent air of naivety and Polonius is much more supportive and comforting, compared to his representation in the first. To add to the close family dynamic, we chose to film this scene around a campfire which to us made the scene feel very home-like and loving. Even the point where Laertes is parting ways with his family, Polonius seems more interested in how Laertes will fare in France over being mostly concerned about his reputation. With These interpretations, we really weigh on the value of tone and setting describing how characters are really feeling towards each other.
By: Ebany, Asha, Declan, Therese, Breann, Adrian, and Rehana