Hamlet (1948)

Unrated  |   |  Drama  |  12 August 1948 (Australia)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.9/10 from 11,081 users  
Reviews: 68 user | 44 critic

Prince Hamlet struggles over whether or not he should kill his uncle, whom he suspects has murdered his father, the former king.



0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

Won 4 Oscars. Another 11 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The rise and fall of a corrupt politician, who makes his friends richer and retains power by dint of a populist appeal.

Director: Robert Rossen
Stars: Broderick Crawford, John Ireland, Joanne Dru
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The biopic of the famous French muckraking writer and his involvement in fighting the injustice of the Dreyfuss Affair.

Director: William Dieterle
Stars: Paul Muni, Gale Sondergaard, Joseph Schildkraut
Going My Way (1944)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Youthful Father Chuck O'Malley led a colorful life of sports, song, and romance before joining the Roman Catholic clergy, but his level gaze and twinkling eyes make it clear that he knows ... See full summary »

Director: Leo McCarey
Stars: Bing Crosby, Barry Fitzgerald, Frank McHugh
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A reporter pretends to be Jewish in order to cover a story on anti-Semitism, and personally discovers the true depths of bigotry and hatred.

Director: Elia Kazan
Stars: Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire, John Garfield
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Fletcher Christian successfully leads a revolt against the ruthless Captain Bligh on the HMS Bounty. However, Bligh returns one year later, hell bent on avenging his captors.

Director: Frank Lloyd
Stars: Charles Laughton, Clark Gable, Franchot Tone
Cavalcade (1933)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A cavalcade of English life from New Year's Eve 1899 until 1933 seen through the eyes of well-to-do Londoners Jane and Robert Marryot. Amongst events touching their family are the Boer War,... See full summary »

Director: Frank Lloyd
Stars: Diana Wynyard, Clive Brook, Una O'Connor
Mrs. Miniver (1942)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A British family struggles to survive the first months of World War II.

Director: William Wyler
Stars: Greer Garson, Walter Pidgeon, Teresa Wright
Cimarron (1931)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A newspaper editor settles in an Oklahoma boom town with his reluctant wife at the end of the nineteenth century.

Director: Wesley Ruggles
Stars: Richard Dix, Irene Dunne, Estelle Taylor
Certificate: Passed Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Harriet and Queenie Mahoney, a vaudeville act, come to Broadway, where their friend Eddie Kerns needs them for his number in one of Francis Zanfield's shows. Eddie was in love with Harriet,... See full summary »

Director: Harry Beaumont
Stars: Bessie Love, Anita Page, Charles King
Tom Jones (1963)
Adventure | Comedy | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

In eighteenth century England, "first cousins" Tom Jones and Master Blifil grew up together in privilege in the western countryside, but could not be more different in nature. Tom, the ... See full summary »

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Albert Finney, Susannah York, George Devine
Henry V (1944)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In the midst of the Hundred Years' War in 1415, the young King Henry V of England embarks on the conquest of France.

Director: Laurence Olivier
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Robert Newton, Leslie Banks
Grand Hotel I (1932)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A group of very different individuals staying at a luxurious hotel in Berlin deal with each of their respective dramas.

Director: Edmund Goulding
Stars: Greta Garbo, John Barrymore, Joan Crawford


Cast overview, first billed only:
Niall MacGinnis ...
Tony Tarver ...
Russell Thorndike ...
Basil Sydney ...
Hamlet - Prince of Denmark / Voice of Ghost
Norman Wooland ...
Felix Aylmer ...


William Shakespeare's tale of tragedy of murder and revenge in the royal halls of medieval Denmark. Claudius, brother to the King, conniving with the Queen, poisons the monarch and seizes the throne, taking the widowed Gertrude for his bride. Hamlet, son of the murdered King, mournful of his father's death and mother's hasty marriage, is confronted by the ghost of the late King who reveals the manner of his murder. Seeking revenge, Hamlet recreates the monstrous deed in a play with the help of some traveling actors to torment the conscience of the evil Claudius. In a visit with his mother, Hamlet expresses his anger and disappointment concerning her swiftly untimed marriage. Thinking a concealed spy in his mother's chamber to be the lurking Claudius, he mistakenly kills the meddling counselor, Polonius, father of Ophelia and Laertes. Claudius, on the pretext that Hamlet will be endangered by his subjects for the murder of Polonius, sends the prince to England. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

murder | revenge | prince | death | denmark | See All (80) »


The motion picture of all time...for all time! (Print ad for re-release 1954)




Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

12 August 1948 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

Amlet  »

Box Office


£500,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


At $2 million, this was a very expensive production in its day. See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: So oft it chances in particular men / That through some vicious mole of nature in them, / By the o'ergrowth of some complexion / Oft breaking down the pales and forts of reason, / Or by some habit grown too much; that these men - / Carrying, I say, the stamp of one defect, / Their virtues else - be they as pure as grace, / Shall in the general censure take corruption / From that particular fault... This is the tragedy of a man who could not make up his mind.
See more »


Referenced in Great Performances: Laurence Olivier: A Life (1983) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

the great moody Dane
17 August 2003 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

It stands to reason that Larry Olivier's version of Hamlet is one of the best, and even if he was a little old for the role (in his forties by this time) it really is the perfect role for him.

One or two things to note - the camera angles and shots are often stunning, from above, using angles and shadows, extreme close-ups, and so on. This gives the sometimes ponderous adaptation atmosphere and the black and white photography is gorgeous. Amongst the supporting cast Jean Simmons is a childish, doting Ophelia but this works well. Not working so well are the soliloquies largely within Hamlet's head (and therefore, voiceover). This seems a little gimmicky and only really makes sense with 'To be or not to be'.

That aside, this really is Larry's show and he is brilliant. Despite a few cuts it does the original play proud and is, like Welles' Macbeth and Othello, a truly cinematic reading.

21 of 25 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
olivier's preface angelgirl720
Movie titles from Hamlet minerva-23
Almost the Best Version vmancini218c2000
Where are Claudius' pants?! thevailkid08
Hamlet Stampsfightclub
Where are the Jews linemen52000
Discuss Hamlet (1948) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: