The highly successful 1964 Richard Burton Broadway production of "Hamlet", deliberately staged in the style of a "dress rehearsal", but performed in front of a live audience.

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Storyline

Sir John Gielgud directed this "Electronovision" taping of the play "Hamlet" performed at the Lunt-Fontanne Theater on Broadway in 1964 ("Electronovision" was a short-lived gimmick which was basically closed-circuit TV). The most unusual thing about this film is that the actors are in street clothes instead of period costumes, and the sets are minimal, to say the least. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

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Richard Burton in HAMLET with the entire original Broadway cast. The complete performance from the stage of the Lunt-Fontanne Theater on Broadway through the NEW MIRACLE PROCESS ELECTRONOVISION

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23 September 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Richard Burton's Hamlet  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

By the time this film was made, Frederick Young had replaced Robert Burr in the role of Bernardo. See more »

Connections

Version of TV de Vanguarda: Hamlet (1953) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The greatest vocalization Hamlet's pain and Shakespeare's words ever.
3 November 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A previous reviewer misleadingly said, "Because of the fact it was filmed during a dress rehearsal, it does not have the lavish period sets, costumes, etc. of other versions." This special Electonicvision tape was recorded during a live performance not a rehearsal. The play had been running many weeks when this recording was made. The play was staged as if it were done during a rehearsal, but not during a dress rehearsal, because a dress rehearsal would have had elaborate period costumes and not actors casual rehearsal clothes. Of course the actors "casual rehearsal clothes" were carefully selected to enhance and emphasize aspects of the character. Hamelet for example dressed in gloomy black.

The director John Gielgud saw this film and expressed disappointment that Burton had slipped back into his sloppy little boy egotistic expressions at the expense of subtlety. Many critics a the time said that Burton performed self indulgently, emphasizing every moment, ignoring the chances for subtle variation the role allowed;that Burton gave a reading, an indulgence of his virtuoso voice rather than nuanced acting. I saw this when it was first shown to the public in 1964 and I thought it was reading indulging his virtuoso voice and I loved it. Because I think that is exactly as Shakespeare wrote it, indulging his virtuoso voice as a writer. I love this Burton Hamlet more than I can say.


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