7.6/10
17,016
124 user 37 critic

Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (1990)

PG | | Comedy, Drama | 8 February 1991 (USA)
Two minor characters from the play, "Hamlet" stumble around unaware of their scripted lives and unable to deviate from them.

Director:

Writer:

Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

This film is the story of the spectacular life and violent death of British playwright Joe Orton. In his teens, Orton is befriended by the older, more reserved Kenneth Halliwell, and while ... See full summary »

Director: Stephen Frears
Stars: Gary Oldman, Alfred Molina, Vanessa Redgrave
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

An aimless young man, Johnny, is sent prison. He entrusts his beloved dog, Evie, to the care of his former lover and best friend, Frank. When he gets out of prison, he has to face ... See full summary »

Director: Colin Gregg
Stars: Alan Bates, Max Wall, Liz Smith
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

Julian Marsh is an out of work ladies' man who lands a job directing a bizarre adaptation of Hamlet. After casting his best friend and his ex-girlfriend in the show, Julian finds himself in... See full summary »

Director: Jordan Galland
Stars: Jake Hoffman, Devon Aoki, John Ventimiglia
Hamlet (1996)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, returns home to find his father murdered and his mother remarrying the murderer, his uncle. Meanwhile, war is brewing.

Director: Kenneth Branagh
Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Julie Christie, Derek Jacobi
Sid and Nancy (1986)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Morbid biographical story of Sid Vicious, bassist with British punk group the Sex Pistols, and his girlfriend Nancy Spungen. When the Sex Pistols break up after their fateful US tour, ... See full summary »

Director: Alex Cox
Stars: Gary Oldman, Chloe Webb, David Hayman
Chattahoochee (1989)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

In 1955 Florida, a Korean vet has a breakdown and is incarcerated in a "maximum security" mental health prison, where patients are abused.

Director: Mick Jackson
Stars: Gary Oldman, Dennis Hopper, Frances McDormand
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Detective Jack Grimaldi (Gary Oldman) takes us through his shattered life after encountering the most deadly (and deceptive) criminal he has ever had to deal with. It doesn't help that ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Medak
Stars: Gary Oldman, Lena Olin, Wallace Wood
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The life and death of the legendary Ludwig van Beethoven. Beside all the work he is known for, the composer once wrote a famous love letter to a nameless beloved and the movie tries to find... See full summary »

Director: Bernard Rose
Stars: Gary Oldman, Jeroen Krabbé, Isabella Rossellini
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Terry Noonan returns home to New York's Hells Kitchen after a ten year absence. He soon hooks up with childhood pal Jackie who is involved in the Irish mob run by his brother Frankie. Terry... See full summary »

Directors: Phil Joanou, Michael Lee Baron
Stars: Sean Penn, Ed Harris, Gary Oldman
Henry V (1989)
Action | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

In the midst of the Hundred Years' War in 1415, the young King Henry V of England embarks on the conquest of France.

Director: Kenneth Branagh
Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Derek Jacobi, Simon Shepherd
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Young lovers Hero and Claudio, soon to wed, conspire to get verbal sparring partners and confirmed singles Benedick and Beatrice to wed as well.

Director: Kenneth Branagh
Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Emma Thompson, Keanu Reeves
Track 29 (1988)
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A doctor's wife tires of his obsession with model trains, and spends her days wondering about the son she gave up for adoption at birth. While eating at a roadside cafe, she encounters a ... See full summary »

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: Theresa Russell, Gary Oldman, Christopher Lloyd
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Livio Badurina ...
Tragedian
Tomislav Maretic ...
Tragedian
Mare Mlacnik ...
Tragedian
Serge Soric ...
Tragedian (as Srdjan Soric)
Mladen Vasary ...
Tragedian
Zeljko Vukmirica ...
Tragedian
Branko Zavrsan ...
Tragedian
Joanna Roth ...
...
...
...
Ljubo Zecevic ...
Edit

Storyline

Showing events from the point of view of two minor characters from Hamlet, men who have no control over their destiny, this film examines fate and asks if we can ever really know what's going on? Are answers as important as the questions? Will Rosencrantz and Guildenstern (or Guildenstern and Rosencrantz) manage to discover the source of Hamlet's malaise as requested by the new king? Will the mysterious players who are strolling around the castle reveal the secrets they evidently know? And whose serve is it? Written by Mark Thompson <mrt@oasis.icl.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

8 February 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Eles Morreram  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$739,104 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

While on the ship bound for England, Tim Roth remarks, "I think I'll spend the rest of my life on boats." He does just that in the The Legend of 1900 (1998), in which his character spends his entire life on a cruise liner, never once stepping on dry land. See more »

Goofs

Throughout the movie there are scenes where day suddenly changes to night and vice versa. This is a running gag of Tom Stoppard plays which often have "time jumps" written into the stage directions. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are riding horses down a path - they pause]
Rosencrantz: [to Guildenstern] Umm, uh...
[Guildenstern rides away, and Rosencrantz follows. Rosencrantz spots a gold coin on the ground]
Rosencrantz: [to horse] Whoa - whoa, whoa.
[Gets off horse and starts flipping the coin]
Rosencrantz: Hmmm. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads.
[Guildenstern grabs the coin, checks both sides, then tosses it back to Rosencrantz]
Rosencrantz: ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Pink Flamingos (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Seamus
Performed by Pink Floyd
Courtesy of EMI Records UK Ltd.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A comedy... about tragedy
4 February 2001 | by (Michigan) – See all my reviews

Imagine if you will, two talented actors. They are playing quite small roles... the smallest roles in the play so are given no form of direction or motivation for their parts. They are simply told they are "sent for". They are told they are "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern" but no one fully indicated to them which of them were which. No they are thrust bodily into the play itself (Hamlet) and stripped of all their memories of their life before... they have become the characters. They know their cues, instinctively know their lines, but no one bothered to tell them the plot of the play, leaving them to figure it out (or not) for themselves. Their only source of any kind of direction is a player (Dreyfuss) who gives them a rudimentary crash course on dying and tragedy itself ("Generally speaking, things have gone about as far as they can possibly go, when things have gotten about as bad as they can reasonably get.")... and ("We are tragedians. We follow directions. There is no choice involved.") This is Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. And it is the funniest intellectually stimulating comedy I've ever seen. Oldman and Roth deliver a wonderful performance, always desperately struggling "get it" but never quite fully understanding what's going on around them. Oldman's portrayal of the existentially distracted Rosencrantz... or is that Guildenstern... was brilliant! (G: Is that you? R: I don't know! G: (disgustedly) It's you.) Viewers who delighted in the "verbal tennis" match might also notice that this really goes on through out the movie. (Player: But why? R: Exactly! G: Exactly what? R: Exactly why. G: Why what? R: What? G: Why? Why what, exactly?) It's truly sad that this movie doesn't get the recognition that it deserves. See Hamlet... become familiar with the story line... and then see this movie. It is quite worth the effort. I give it a 10 out of 10.


46 of 53 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Would you like to play a game of questions? FeloniousPhunk
Roger Ebert's Review Johnny-1810
Gary Oldman is HOT in this movie!!!!! briar-rose-2
Was anyone else a bit... Lost? chromeveela
How well do you need to know Hamlet? VanBurenPhilips
sequel? johnsohn

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?