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A Midsummer Night's Dream (1999)

 -  Comedy | Fantasy | Romance  -  14 May 1999 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 19,726 users   Metascore: 61/100
Reviews: 217 user | 97 critic | 24 from Metacritic.com

Lovers lives are complicated by city law, feuding faerie royalty, and... love.

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Cast

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Storyline

Shakespeare's intertwined love polygons begin to get complicated from the start--Demetrius and Lysander both want Hermia but she only has eyes for Lysander. Bad news is, Hermia's father wants Demetrius for a son-in-law. On the outside is Helena, whose unreturned love burns hot for Demetrius. Hermia and Lysander plan to flee from the city under cover of darkness but are pursued by an enraged Demetrius (who is himself pursued by an enraptured Helena). In the forest, unbeknownst to the mortals, Oberon and Titania (King and Queen of the faeries) are having a spat over a servant boy. The plot twists up when Oberon's head mischief-maker, Puck, runs loose with a flower which causes people to fall in love with the first thing they see upon waking. Throw in a group of labourers preparing a play for the Duke's wedding (one of whom is given a donkey's head and Titania for a lover by Puck) and the complications become fantastically funny. Written by Lordship <lordship@juno.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexual content | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

14 May 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream  »

Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£310,464 (UK) (24 September 1999)

Gross:

£1,183,531 (UK) (15 October 1999)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Take a look at what some of the other performers are rehearsing while the Mechanicals are waiting for word from the Duke. One group of players are rehearsing Sophocles' Oedipus Rex and another pair of players are rehearsing a scene from William Shakespeare's play Othello. See more »

Goofs

In the play within a play scene, Bottom alternates between wearing and not wearing leggings. See more »

Quotes

Bottom the Weaver: The eye of man hath not heard, the ear of man hath not seen; Man's hand is not able to taste, his tongue to conceive, nor his heart to report what my dream was.
See more »

Connections

Version of A Midsummer Night's Dream (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Non più mesta
from the opera "La Cenerentola"
Composed by Gioachino Rossini
Performed by Cecilia Bartoli
With the Orchestra e Coro del Teatro Comunale di Bologna
Conducted by Riccardo Chailly
Courtesy of The Decca Record Company Limited, London
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Surprisingly faithful adaptation
19 October 2004 | by (Harrisburg, Pennsylvania) – See all my reviews

As a general rule, I normally don't post comments unless I have enough time to write a thorough review, and have given it much thought before hand. I'm sorry, but even though it's 2am, I can't bear to go to sleep and let the review before me just sit there. Obviously the reviewer before me seems to have no idea that the complicities that arise from the various plots go back to Shakespeare himself - and it is a great achievement by this film to manage to keep all the plates spinning and all the stories interesting.

I am amazed by this film. I am a life-long Shakespeare fan and it's great to see a faithful American production. The British/American cast all worked fantasically well together - Christian Bale, Anna Friel, Dominic West, and Calista Flockheart were all perfectly cast as the four lovers. The fairies and the actors both worked very well to frame the story - and the director has managed to keep it both visually unique and incredibly entertaining.

I'm not quite sure why they decided to change the location from Greece to Italy, but in an age where Kenneth Branagh is trying to make a 1940s musical out of Love's Labour's Lost, I say, the changes could be a lot worse. All in all, this is a very impressive adaptation. I'm just happy to see that Shakespeare hasn't lost his appeal to modern audiences.


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