Great Performances: Season 21, Episode 15

Oedipus Rex (26 May 1993)

TV Episode  |   |  Biography, Drama, Music
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.2/10 from 117 users  
Reviews: 6 user

Add a Plot



(libretto), (play), 2 more credits »
0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

"Hand of God" - What to Watch

IMDb sits down with the cast of the thriller drama "Hand of God," including Ron Perlman, Julian Morris, Garret Dillahunt, and Alona Tal.

Watch our interview

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 5 titles
created 19 Jun 2012
a list of 247 titles
created 14 Feb 2013
a list of 61 titles
created 13 Jul 2013
list image
a list of 3739 titles
created 10 months ago

Related Items

Search for "Oedipus Rex" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Oedipus Rex (26 May 1993)

Oedipus Rex (26 May 1993) on IMDb 8.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Great Performances.
« Previous Episode | 54 of 372 Episodes | Next Episode »
Won 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »


Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Philip Langridge ...
Oedipus Dancer
Bryn Terfel ...
Harry Peeters ...
Robert Swensen ...
Michio Tatara ...
Kayoko Shiraishi ...
The Speaker
Katerina Bakatsaki ...
Saito Kinen Festival Dancers
Michael Curry ...
Saito Kinen Festival Dancers
Toyosaburo Hanayagi ...
Saito Kinen Festival Dancers
Hisako Horikawa ...
Saito Kinen Festival Dancers
Asako Hotta ...
Saito Kinen Festival Dancers
Yayoe Inage ...
Saito Kinen Festival Dancers
Hanako Kitazawa ...
Saito Kinen Festival Dancers


Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

26 May 1993 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

As long as he loves his mother
10 January 2006 | by (Birmingham, England) – See all my reviews

This film is a tour de force from Julie Taymor who directs and does the stage design and masks. No-one comes near to matching her imagination on the modern operatic stage. Since making this film in 1992 she has had much success in film-making and in directing musicals. One can only hope that she can be persuaded to return to opera one day. I would love to see a Ring cycle directed by her. The current Rheingold at Covent Garden has giants with over-sized hands just like the characters in this film. The current Butterfly at ENO uses Japanese puppetry. Coincidence maybe, or evidence that Taymor's influence is pervasive.

Taymar uses fantastical costumes, masks, puppets, and origami birds to recreate the story of Oedipus on a stage set on stilts above a lake. Red ribbons are a recurring theme. They are used as an umbilical chord when Oedipus is born, they hang down from Oedipus's eyes after he has blinded himself, in a breathtaking effect they are used to make a crossroads when Oedipus's slaying of his father is reenacted by puppets.

This neo-classical opera-ballet by Stravinsky enjoyed justified obscurity until this film brought it to life. The music is uninspired but inoffensive and Philip Langridge, Jesse Norman and a very young Bryn Terfel make the most of it. The singers are fairly immobile, in accordance with Stravinsky's wishes. Min Tanaka is the dancing Oedipus to Langridge's singing Oedipus. This creates some slight confusion towards the end when dancing Oedipus pokes out the eyes of singing Oedipus.

The libretto is in Latin but do not worry if your high-school Latin is a bit rusty. There is a helpful narrator who introduces and describes each scene in Japanese.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Will this version be released on DVD? The Baron
What the hell is that 'Great Performances' title? sonlui
What the hell? (Jesus Christ Superstar 2000) kagom_jack
Shame on PBS venussansfurs
Diane Lane..Summer...Great Performances alnovitsky
The Gospel At Colonus michaelriley
Discuss Oedipus Rex (1993) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: