7.3/10
277
3 user 1 critic

A Midsummer Night's Dream (1959)

Sen noci svatojánské (original title)
The first puppet kinescope in the world. It is based on the famous poetic comedy by William Shakespeare. Three worlds meet in this story: the noble world of three Athens couples, a common ... See full summary »

Director:

Jirí Trnka
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

More Like This 

Ruka (1965)
Animation | Short | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A delicate and secluded ceramist sees his orderly life turn upside down, when a gigantic hand in a white glove invades his space, demanding that a sculpture of itself is made. When will the hand's obstinate demands stop?

Director: Jirí Trnka
Animation | Fantasy | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Excellent stop-motion animation film from one of the best Czech filmmakers, Jirí Trnka. It tells the ancient story of Czechoslovakia, how it was founded by Czech, the Forefather, and a ... See full summary »

Director: Jirí Trnka
Stars: Zdenek Stepánek, Eduard Kohout, Karel Höger
Bajaja (1950)
Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Bayaya, a young peasant, protected by the spirit of his dead mother, arrives at the castle of the King, where he entertains his three daughters. He soon realizes that the three princesses ... See full summary »

Director: Jirí Trnka
Stars: Detsky pevecky sbor Jana Kuhna
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

The adventures of four young lovers, a group of amateur actors and their interactions with fairies come to light in a moonlit forest.

Director: Peter Hall
Stars: Derek Godfrey, Barbara Jefford, Nicholas Selby
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A boy dreams the play. Authority in Athens is shaky: Hermia rejects her father's choice, the Duke backs her father, and the Duchess sides with Hermia. Dad's choice, Demetrius, pursues ... See full summary »

Director: Adrian Noble
Stars: Lindsay Duncan, Alex Jennings, Desmond Barrit
Hamlet I (1964)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The highly successful 1964 Richard Burton Broadway production of "Hamlet", deliberately staged in the style of a "dress rehearsal", but performed in front of a live audience.

Directors: Bill Colleran, John Gielgud
Stars: Richard Burton, Hume Cronyn, Alfred Drake
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Theseus, Duke of Athens, is going to marry Hyppolyta, Queen of the Amazons. Demetrius is engaged with Hermia, but Hermia loves Lysander. Helena loves Demetrius. Oberon and Titania, of the ... See full summary »

Directors: William Dieterle, Max Reinhardt
Stars: James Cagney, Dick Powell, Ian Hunter
Chronopolis (1982)
Animation | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Weary immortals inhabit a metropolis in the sky and amuse themselves with constructions as they kill time and await whatever comes next.

Director: Piotr Kamler
Stars: Michael Lonsdale
Spalicek (1947)
Animation
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Director: Jirí Trnka
Animation | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Director: Jirí Trnka
Stars: Jan Werich
Ice Palace (1960)
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

After WW1, Zeb and Thor start a cannery business in Alaska but eventually they drift apart with Zeb becoming unscrupulous and Thor becoming involved in Alaskan politics.

Director: Vincent Sherman
Stars: Richard Burton, Robert Ryan, Martha Hyer
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A handsome and successful young doctor returns to his home town in New England to see his dying friend for one last time. However, his friend wants to die because he is suffering so much ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Petrie
Stars: Richard Burton, Barbara Rush, Jack Carson
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Joss Ackland ... Quince (voice)
Ann Bell ... Hermia (voice)
Richard Burton ... Narrator
Tom Criddle Tom Criddle ... Lysander (voice)
Jean Desailly ... Récitant / Narrator (French version) (voice)
Laura Graham Laura Graham ... Hippolyta (voice)
Jack Gwillim ... Oberon (voice)
Barbara Jefford ... Titania (voice)
Barbara Leigh-Hunt ... Helena (voice)
Hugh Manning Hugh Manning ... Theseus (voice)
Alec McCowen ... Bottom (voice)
Michael Meacham Michael Meacham ... Demetrius (voice)
Stephen Moore Stephen Moore ... Flute (voice)
Rudolf Pellar ... Narrator (original Czech version) (as R. Pellar)
Roger Shepherd Roger Shepherd ... Puck (voice)
Edit

Storyline

The first puppet kinescope in the world. It is based on the famous poetic comedy by William Shakespeare. Three worlds meet in this story: the noble world of three Athens couples, a common popular world of tradesmen amateur theatre and a fairy-tale happiness of magic creatures as elves and nymphs. The film is considered the most remarkable Jirí Trnka's work and a milestone in the history of the world animation. Written by KrátkýFilm

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Czechoslovakia

Language:

Czech

Release Date:

25 September 1959 (Czechoslovakia) See more »

Also Known As:

A Midsummer Night's Dream See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Connections

Version of Gran teatro: El sueño de una noche de verano (1964) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A Dream You Won't Want to Wake Up From!
11 November 2002 | by dwingroveSee all my reviews

Alas, the version I saw was not the one listed here - with narration by Richard Burton and voices dubbed by luminaries of the Royal Shakespeare Company - but an alternative one with a very cloying woman (uncredited, and deservedly so!) who tells the whole story in voiceover. The result was less 'William Shakespeare Presents' than 'Tales for Toddler Time.' Frankly, I don't know why they bothered with narration at all, as Trnka's animation is so magically vivid as to make words superfluous.

In fact, this film is a masterpiece of visual storytelling - a reminder of just how wondrous animation can be when it doesn't insult a viewer's intelligence a la Walt Disney. Indeed, it's surprisingly adult at times. A randy goat (under the influence of magic love potion) tries to rape the fairy Puck. The two runaway lovers, Hermia and Lysander, slip into an eerily vulva-shaped cave to consummate their love. Strange, then, that Trnka cuts out the story's gay element - the desire of the Fairy King Oberon for the changeling boy. Perhaps that was more than Communist-era censors could take.

Otherwise, this is an exemplary reading of the text. Jiri Trnka's visualisation of the Enchanted Forest - every inch of it swathed in moonlight and dripping with rose petals, fairy wings, spying owls - rivals the Baroque splendours of the 1935 Max Reinhardt film. Even the amateur actors' performance of 'Pyramus and Thisbe' (an irksome comic interlude in most stagings) is transformed by Puck's magic into a heart-soaring experience. A must for anyone who loves Shakespeare - or, more important, anyone who doesn't - this is one dream you won't want to wake up from!

David Melville


9 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 3 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed