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Love's Labour's Lost (1985)

A scholarly king and his three companions swear off the society of women for three years, only to have a diplomatic visit from a French princess and her three ladies-in-waiting thwart their intentions.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jonathan Kent ...
Christopher Blake ...
Longaville
Geoffrey Burridge ...
Dumain
Mike Gwilym ...
Berowne
...
Don Armado
...
Moth
...
Costard
...
Dull
Paddy Navin ...
Jaquenetta
...
Boyet
...
The Princess of France
Katy Behean ...
Maria
Petra Markham ...
Katharine
...
Rosaline
Jay Ruparelia ...
Adrian
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Storyline

When the King of Navarre and three of his cronies swear to spend all their days in study and not to look at any girls, they've forgotten that the daughter of the King of France is coming on a diplomatic visit. And the lady herself and her attendants play merry havoc with their intentions. Written by Kathy Li

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Genres:

Comedy | Romance

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Details

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Release Date:

5 January 1985 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

The Complete Dramatic Works of William Shakespeare: Love's Labour's Lost  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For Elijah Moshinsky, the central episode of the production is the play-within-the-play in the final scene which is interrupted by the arrival of Marcade, an episode to which Moshinsky refers as "an astonishing sleight of hand about reality and the reflection of experiencing reality." He argues that the audience is so wrapped up in watching the characters watch the pageant that they have forgotten reality, and the arrival of Marcade with news of the death of the King of France jolts the audience back to reality in the same way it jolts the eight main characters. In this sense, Moshinsky sees the play more as about artifice and reality than romantic relationships. See more »

Quotes

Ferdinand, King of Navarre: I love to hear him lie.
See more »

Connections

Version of Love's Labour's Lost (2017) See more »

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User Reviews

 
a lesser play, well cast and fun
11 June 2007 | by See all my reviews

Neither the most fascinating or the most accessible of Shakespeare's plays, 'Love's Labour's Lost' is the first part of a new lost pair of plays centering on the King of Navarre and his Lords as they vow to foresake all female company for three years to concentrate on their studies. All, that is, but the Princess of France who just happens to be due on a state visit ... well attended by her ladies! As the King, Jonathan Kent (now a respected theatre director) is pleasing enough, and his young courtiers (Berowne is a peach of a part seized on with relish by Mike Gwilym; Longaville and Dumain are a couple of dreamers played by Christopher Blake and Geoffrey Burridge, two fine actors sadly now lost to us) are strong enough characterisations to move proceedings along.

Maureen Lipman is a mischievous Princess, all smiles and jests, while her ladies (Petra Markham, Jenny Agutter, and Katy Behean) make good foils for the lovestruck swains. The supporting cast are no less watchable - David Warner excellent as Armado, with John Kane as faithful servant, Paul Jesson fun as the dumb Costard, and Frank Williams (the vicar from 'Dad's Army') is well-cast as Dull.

Set in a limbo time and place and dressed accordingly, this production of 'Love's Labour's Lost' does much to bring in the viewer, and when the lines are most impenetrable, it doesn't matter.

A short adaptation at just two hours, this is a quiet production from the BBC set which sits nicely alongside showier pieces such as 'Hamlet' and 'Othello'.


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