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Macbeth (1998)

TV Movie  |  15 January 1998 (UK)
6.2
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 119 users  
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English thespian Sean Pertwee plays the painfully ambitious royal who schemes to murder so he can ascend to the throne in this superior version of William Shakespeare's literary classic. ... See full summary »

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English thespian Sean Pertwee plays the painfully ambitious royal who schemes to murder so he can ascend to the throne in this superior version of William Shakespeare's literary classic. Spurred by the pressure exerted by his equally power-hungry wife, Lady MacBeth (Greta Scacchi), the Thane conspires to kill, but is so overcome with guilt that he's unable to wash the blood off his hands -- literally and figuratively. Written by Polly_Kat

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more gadgetry than Shakespeare
14 September 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Very disappointing. Pertwee is an offhand kind of Macbeth, with little acting, gestural, or vocal range. The director managed to cut or truncate some of the best verbal/poetic phrases/lines -- a flabbergasting disrespect for Shakespeare. If you want to do a play roughly related to Macbeth, do it, but don't call it a version of Shakespeare. This was simply a very bad version; it might have worked as an adaptation, completely reworked.. Lady Macbeth was better than most of the others, but almost everything else in the production was inferior. One of the worst things was the omission or eviscerating of key elements in the play -- e.g., the Porter's scene, which is almost completely cut, and Macduff's big scene in Act IV. In the interview between Macduff and Malcolm, Malcolm is totally unconvincing either when he is feeding Macduff his stupid stories about his vices or when he's proclaiming his actual innocence; one could easily think that he's pretending. Macduff is denied some of the most crucial lines in the play, when he learns of the slaughter of his wife and children. All in all, this is an insult to Shakespeare's play.


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