With a friend desperate for money, a merchant takes out a loan from a ruthless money-lender. Confident that his ships will soon be bringing him great wealth, the merchant willingly agrees ...
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Prospero and his daughter Miranda must take refuge on an enchanted island. There Prospero, who himself has magical powers, releases the spirit Ariel from a spell, and also meets the savage ... See full summary »
Although several others are ahead of him in the line of succession, Richard of Gloucester is determined to gain the throne. Through deceit, manipulation, and murder, he does become King ... See full summary »
Frank R. Benson
King Lear decides to divide his kingdom amongst his three daughters. The oldest two daughters fawn insincerely over their father, and get most of his possessions. The youngest daughter, ... See full summary »
Gerolamo Lo Savio
Olga Giannini Novelli
With a friend desperate for money, a merchant takes out a loan from a ruthless money-lender. Confident that his ships will soon be bringing him great wealth, the merchant willingly agrees to conditions of the loan that put him at great personal risk. Written by
This is a colorful but somewhat fragmented early film version of Shakespeare's "The Merchant of Venice". In the play, the dialogue is very important both to the plot and to the meaning, and so any silent version will miss a lot. As long as you are familiar with the story, you can still get enough out of it to make it worth a look, but it also leaves out some of the best parts of the play. One aspect that makes it worth seeing is that the Italian film-makers put lots of color into the costumes and some of the other details, using the painstaking old hand-tinting method. The production team did the same thing with King Lear, and that film (titled "Re Lear", in Italian) works better in silent format. This one is still worth a look for Shakespeare fans who like silent movies, but it does not work quite as well as a lot of the other early attempts to put the Bard onto film.
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