Joss Whedon’s new cinematic masterpiece “Much Ado About Nothing” is a nonstop party that everyone in the audience is invited to.

The modern take of the Shakespearean comedy is about two couples whose love and happiness encounters some unpredictable obstacles. Claudio (Fran Kranz), upon arriving to Messina with Benedick (Alexis Denisof) and Don Pedro (Reed Diamond), falls in love with Hero (Jilian Morgese), the governor’s (Clark Gregg) daughter.

While the wedding arrangements are still in the process, Don Pedro, Claudio, Hero and Leonato the governor decide to trick Benedick and Beatrice (Amy Acker) to fall for each other as they continue to exchange nasty comments against one another upon their every meeting. However, nothing goes as smoothly as the heroes hoped when the villainous brother of Don Pedro, Don John (Sean Maher) decides to destroy the future union of Claudio and Hero.

The story keeps unraveling, combing both comedy and drama in a witty and charming manner that is a great addition to “Whedonverse.”

The black-and-white feature was shot in just 12 days in Whedon’s own home, bringing together his beloved cast of Acker, Denisof, Nathan Fillion and Kranz, who have starred on Whedon’s various TV shows.

The movie is entirely in Shakespearean dialogue, which might take a few minutes to get used to. But once you do, you will not only enjoy it, but you will pay closer attention to the dialogue and interactions between the characters, which will only enhance the experience.

Acker is incredible in her role as the independent, proud and sharp-tongued Beatrice. Denisof, the other half of the complicated relationship, is charming and silly at times, yet quite powerful in portraying Benedick.

Fillion is simply irresistible as a self-absorbed detective Dogberry, who may or may not have helped to solve the mystery of Don John’s evil plans.

What Whedon has proven with his TV shows is that they all concentrate on characters’ personalities and transformations and feature Whedon’s smart wit. All these things coming to life is what makes this distinctive and an even better version than the 1993 cinematic version.

The contrast between modern mise-en-scene and the authentic Shakespearean dialogue in a black-and-white movie is unquestionably gorgeous and a great cinematic implementation.

If you weren’t one of those lucky people to attend the Seattle premiere at the 39th Seattle International Film Festival opening night, you might want to treat yourself when it comes out in the theaters nationwide on June 21 and experience this for yourself. It is a great delight to watch a film that actually explores the cinematic possibilities that can give the audience so much more than the never-ending smashing-and-crashing.

To comment on this story, write to