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Kiss Me, Petruchio (1981)

TV Movie  |   |  Documentary, Comedy  |  7 January 1981 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 63 users  
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Follows actress Meryl Streep and actor Raul Julia as they prepare to perform Shakespeare's comedy "The Taming of the Shrew" for the "Shakespeare in the Park" theater festival.


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Title: Kiss Me, Petruchio (TV Movie 1981)

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Credited cast:
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
John Bottoms ...
Max Gulak ...
Baptista (as Max Gulack)
Joseph Papp ...


Follows actress Meryl Streep and actor Raul Julia as they prepare to perform Shakespeare's comedy "The Taming of the Shrew" for the "Shakespeare in the Park" theater festival.

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7 January 1981 (USA)  »

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A brilliantly captured match between two brilliant actors and one brilliant director, both on stage and off.
25 December 2005 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

I saw this movie years ago on Public Television and as an actor I particularly enjoyed the way the camera tracked the actors on and off stage, and showed the intensity and ecstasy of a full-on, perfectly matched pair of performers. Streep was brilliant in expressing the complexity of passionate attraction while struggling with maintaining one's autonomy. The surrender that ensues is anything BUT submission. Rather, it is the true release that occurs when a powerful, intelligent and strong-willed woman has met her match on all levels. She no longer NEEDS to portray herself as a "shrew," and act out her frustration and sense of isolation, since there is finally a complimentary energy to meet her own. The interplay between the actors and the parts they are playing on stage is exquisitely captured in the movie. Streep's exotic and passionate partner, Raul Julio (sp?) takes commanding charge of this phenomenal woman, and actress. He demonstrates to her that it is safe to transcend her her fears and allow herself her vulnerability. This allows her to enjoy her fullness as a woman, without losing her sense of herself. A rare and granted, politically incorrect thing to witness, or experience, let alone understand. But this pair of actors, Streep and Julio, that Papp cast understood this complex dynamic perfectly. The vitality, immediacy and authenticity of this stunning performance left an impact that was exciting enough to remember years later. Now, as I prepare to teach an inner high school Grade Nine class about the battle of the sexes, I wish I knew how to get a copy of this amazing performance by one of the world's leading directors and actors, captured live and in NEW YORK! What a treasure! Does anyone know how I can get a copy?

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