King Lear, old and tired, divides his kingdom among his daughters, giving great importance to their protestations of love for him. When Cordelia, youngest and most honest, refuses to idly ... See full summary »
Nicol Williamson takes the lead role in this star-studded 1969 version of William Shakespeare's tragedy. Prince Hamlet mourns both his father's death and his mother's remarriage to Claudius... See full summary »
Video production of Shakespeare's stage play about Othello, a Moorish general in Venice deeply in love with his wife Desdemona and, unbeknown to him, deeply hated by his trusted ensign and best friend, Iago, who has death on his mind.
Iago and a comrade-in-arms are outside the Venice home of Desdemona's father, who does not yet know that she has eloped with Othello. Iago confides to his friend -- who had hoped to marry Desdemona -- that he serves Othello to further his own ends. Venice needs Othello to protect its commercial interests in Cyprus where the Turkish fleet is headed. Desdemona insists on going to Cyprus, too. In Cyprus, Iago plots to convince Othello that Desdemona has betrayed him with Cassio. A lot more than political ambition seems to be motivating Iago. Written by
Dale O'Connor <email@example.com>
James Earl Jones was originally cast as Othello but British Equity refused to issue an acting permit for Jones as they disapproved of an American actor being cast in a British adaptation of a Shakespeare play. See more »
Shortly before stabbing himself Othello bounces the blade of the dagger on the bed and we both hear and see the blade retract. See more »
This is one of my favorite pieces of Shakespeare on film or video. Both Anthony Hopkins and Bob Hoskins give thrilling performances. The quiet subtlety of Hopkins interpretation sets the viewer up for a shock when Othello's enormous brutality is revealed. Bob Hoskins is alternately horrifying and loveable. His frequent giggling amuses, and then terrifies. Penelope Hilton's work as Desdemona is equally impressive to that of Hopkins and Hoskins. However, I think in casting her role older than usual, some of the character's innocence is lost. Technically, the lighting and camera work are beautifully handled. Jonathan Miller's direction is sensitive and incisive, and lovingly crafted.
5 of 8 people found this review helpful.
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