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Othello (1956)

Otello (original title)
The Moorish general Othello is manipulated into thinking that his new wife Desdemona has been carrying on an affair with his lieutenant Michael Cassio when in reality it is all part of the scheme of a bitter ensign named Iago.

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
...
Andrei Popov ...
Vladimir Soshalsky ...
Evgeniy Vesnik ...
...
Mikhail Troyanovsky ...
Evgeniy Teterin ...
Brabantio (as Ye. Teterin)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Leyla Ashrafova ...
(as L. Ashrafova)
Boris Belyakov
A. Blokh
V. Borzho
Nikolai Brilling ...
...
Desdemona (voice)
...
Bianca (voice)
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Storyline

Othello is a Moorish military hero married to young and beautiful Desdemona. Envious Iago is scheming against Othello. By planting a fake evidence, Iago provokes Othello's suspicion of Desdemona's infidelity. Enraged Othello loses control and kills Desdemona, then realizes his mistake and kills himself. Written by Steve Shelokhonov

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Distributed by Universal-International Pictures at the request of the U.S. Department of State in connection with its cultural exchange agreement with the Soviet Union. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

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Release Date:

13 March 1956 (Soviet Union)  »

Also Known As:

Othello  »

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(Sovcolor)
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The first filmed "Othello" in color. See more »

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Version of Othello (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Excellent Russian Othello
13 September 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

I have always loved the poetry and intensity of Shakespeare's dialogue in Othello, and I have also found the play one of his more dramatically concise ones. This Othello from Russia is excellent, and very interesting as well. It is handsome to look at, the photography flows nicely and the locations are splendid. The symbolic palette to emphasise Othello's contrasts between physical and temperamental is also interestingly used. The film is smartly written and intelligently adapted and it is directed beautifully by Sergei Yutkevitch. The story is on the most part compelling though I did think Othello and Desdemona's relationship was on the underdeveloped side and I was in two minds as whether the decision to downplay Othello's increasing rage worked, in a way it made the relationship between Othello and Iago convincing but at the same time this side to Othello is a big part of the play and character, to downplay it made the jealousy angle less intense than it ought to be. What the story does do wonderfully is put more emphasis on the corruption of Othello's nobility by Iago's scheming. The whole false confidante(like when the two coo like turtle-doves in one scene) and manipulation of Othello is very well-executed here. The final scene is also very moving. The performances are very good, the best being the superbly scheming Iago of Andrei Popov. Sergei Bondarchuk is not quite in the same league as Orson Welles and Laurence Olivier but still makes for a handsome and commanding Othello, while Irina Skobtseva's Desdemona is appropriately delicate and affecting. All in all, excellent on the whole. 8/10 Bethany Cox


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