Taming of the Shrew3





“Kiss Me Kate” Vs. “The Taming of the Shrew”
There have been many Shakespearean plays that have been made into movies throughout the years. One that may not be so easy to come across is “Kiss Me Kate”. This movie stars Kathryn Gayson ,as Lilli Vanessi, and Howard Keel, as Fred Graham. This is a adaptation of Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew.” The movie contains a story with in a story. The movie is about a man, named Fred Graham, who makes a recreation of the famous play. Many of the characters portray real life people who are some what identical to those in the play. The movie illustrates Shakespeare’s characters as he intended them to be and gives the viewer a good idea of what the play is about.
The main characters in the movie are Lilli and Fred. They are a divorced couple who play Katherina and Petruchio. They are a divorced couple who are very unpleasant to each other. The clash on stage as well as off stage. This helps her relate better to her character. In the play, Petruchio is very nice to Katherina before they get married. He tells her that he can put up with her and that he was born to tame her. Once they are married, everything changes. He begins to act very mean, which is ultimately the reason for her change. In the movie, Fred does many things that upset Lilly and make her want to quit the play before the performance is even over. However at he end, Lilli and Fred End up reconciling, as do Katherina and Pertruchio. If watched closely, the viewers can see her pull out a black book from his coat and throw it away. This would be a sign that things may be shifting for them, in their favor. Fred begins treating Lilly very badly before they go on stage for the last scene. In the play, when Pertruchio takes his new wife home, he begins to treat her very horrifically. He begins throwing food around, yelling, and hitting the servants. He then states that he is going to keep her up all night and complain about many other things so that she will not be content (Act IV, Scene I). The whole act was planned to begin the process of “taming” Katherina. At the end of both the movie and the play, Katherina gives a very long speech that lets the audience know that she has now seen the errors of her ways. The play, on the other hand, gives a little more insight as to why the story ended this way.
The two characters who play Bianca and Lucentio are also dating during the making of the play. Lois, who plays Bianca, is a very flirtatious woman who always seems to get more than her share of attention form men. Bianca is also a character who receives similar attention from men. These two roles fit hand and hand. Bill Calhoun plays Licentious, who eventually weds Bianca. Bill is dating Lois throughout the performance of the play. He, like Lucentio, feels insecure and worrisome about the way his relationship with the woman that he is in love with. When her and Lucentio get married in the movie, it appears to be directly following the wedding of her sister. In the play they are married in ACTIV and Katherina was married in ACTIII SCENE II. There is a lot of detail in between, that the movie does not show. For instance, the play talks about a man named Vicentio. This is the father of Lucentio. Tremio, Lucentio’s servant, persuades a pedant to pose as Lucentio’s father, so that Baptista, Bianca’s father, will allow her to marry. Soon after, the real Vicentio shows up and all the truth is revealed (ACT IV SCENE V). This is a very distinct part of the story that the play leaves out.
The character Gremio, Tranio, Grumio, and Biondello were not acknowledged in the movie. The could appear to be merely extras, but in fact have important roles. Tranio is the one who helps Lucentio to win Bianca. They devise a plan together that will help Lucentio get closer to Bianca. Grumio is always there by Petruchio’s side. In the movie he