An English Professor tries to deal with his wife leaving him, the arrival of his editor who has been waiting for his book for seven years, and the various problems that his friends and associates involve him in.
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 <email@example.com>
The title comes from one of the final lines of William Shakespeare's "Hamlet", where a British ambassador enters the Danish court to find Hamlet, Claudius, Gertrude, and Laertes all dead. The ambassador's line is, "...To tell [the King] his commandment is fulfilled, that Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are dead." See more »
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 »
[Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are riding horses down a path - they pause]
[Guildenstern rides away, and Rosencrantz follows. Rosencrantz spots a gold coin on the ground]
Whoa - whoa, whoa.
[Gets off horse and starts flipping the coin]
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]
[...] See more »
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, victims of circumstance...
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead was one of my favourite films whilst growing up. The movie follows two irrelevant characters (irrelevant in that although they served a significant purpose, their characters were not developed in any depth... Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, as individuals, were relatively unimportant) through one of the most renowned stories ever told (Hamlet). It is a film about two characters that are completely unaware of the magnitude of the events taking place around them. This carries on throughout the entire film, and is also evidenced in their accidental discoveries of significant historical scientific findings (such as the steam engine or the concept of gravity). The characters stumble their way through the film, unaware of the consequences to their actions or their significance or importance.
The characters spend the entire film coming to terms with their existence. Shakespeare didn't provide any detailed character development of either Rosencrantz or Guildenstern, and as such, they are left confused as to the purpose of their own existence.
The film also looks at the concept of a predetermined destiny. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern's fate is already determined before the film begins. And although they play an important role in one of the greatest stories ever told, they are completely unaware of their destiny; they are merely victims of circumstance.
I should also note that the constant banter between the two characters (specifically in their 'Game of Questions') is pure quality.
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