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Richard III (1983)

The Tragedy of Richard III (original title)
Richard of Gloucester uses murder and manipulation to claim England's throne.

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Cast

Credited cast:
Peter Aldwyn ...
Peter Benson ...
Brian Binns ...
Gerald Blackmore ...
Stephen Brigden ...
Antony Brown ...
Sir Richard Ratcliffe (as Anthony Brown)
...
...
Anne Carroll ...
Paul Chapman ...
Michael Cogan ...
...
Rowena Cooper ...
Arthur Cox ...
Lord Grey / Lord Mayor of London
Stuart Cox ...
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Storyline

Richard Duke of Gloucester, youngest brother of King Edward IV, will stop at nothing to get the crown. He first convinces the ailing King that the Duke of Clarence, his elder brother, is a threat to the lives of Edward's two young sons. Edward has him imprisoned in the Tower of London; killers in Richard's pay then drown Clarence in a barrel of wine. When news of Clarence's death reaches the King, the subsequent grief and remorse bring about his death. Richard is made Lord Protector, with power to rule England while his nephew (now King Edward V) is still a minor. Before the young king's coronation he has his two nephews conveyed to the Tower, ostensibly for their safekeeping. Richard's accomplice, the Duke of Buckingham, then declares the two boys illegitimate and offers Richard the crown, which after a show of reticence he accepts. After Richard's coronation, he and Buckingham have a falling-out over whether or not to assassinate the two children. Written by Peter Brynmor Roberts

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23 January 1983 (UK)  »

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Richard III  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

At 239 minutes, this production was the longest episode in the entire BBC Shakespeare series, and when the series was released on DVD in 2005, it was the only adaptation split over two disks. Of the 3,887 lines comprising the First Folio text of the play, Howell cut only 72; roughly 1.8% of the total. See more »

Connections

Version of Richard III (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The best Richard III on film
28 May 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

As a fan of Richard III, I've seen every version produced. I still do not understand why anyone likes Laurence Olivier's version with its grim, heavy-handed performance. Ron Cook is the perfect Richard, upbeat and energetic, sly and humorous, delighting in his mission until the weight of his crimes begin to trouble his conscience. Jane Powell's direction, as she did with Henry VI parts I, II and III (my favorite of the series), keeps the action moving and the characters in sharp focus, especially King Edward, whose final speech is one you'll always remember. This is the Richard that Shakespeare wanted his audience to see, a man of a courage who loses control of his ambition.


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