6.8/10
277
16 user 1 critic

Macbeth (1983)

Macbeth and his wife murder Duncan in order to gain his crown, but the bloodbath doesn't stop there, and things supernatural combine to bring the Macbeths down.

Director:

Jack Gold

Writer:

William Shakespeare (play)
Reviews

Watch Now

From $1.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

A Performance of Macbeth (TV Movie 1979)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Macbeth is a daring member of the Scottish military who receives a revelation from three menacing sorceresses that he will someday become the King of Scotland. This information gives him a ... See full summary »

Director: Philip Casson
Stars: Ian McKellen, Judi Dench, John Bown
Macbeth (1971)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A ruthlessly ambitious Scottish lord seizes the throne with the help of his scheming wife and a trio of witches.

Director: Roman Polanski
Stars: Jon Finch, Francesca Annis, Martin Shaw
Macbeth (TV Movie 1982)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A ruthlessly ambitious Scottish laird seizes the throne with the help of his scheming wife and a trio of witches.

Director: Kirk Browning
Stars: Philip Anglim, Maureen Anderman, J. Kenneth Campbell
Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (TV Movie 1980)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Hamlet suspects his uncle has murdered his father to claim the throne of Denmark and the hand of Hamlet's mother, but the prince cannot decide whether or not he should take vengeance.

Director: Rodney Bennett
Stars: Derek Jacobi, Claire Bloom, Patrick Stewart
Julius Caesar (TV Movie 1979)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The assassination of the would be ruler of Rome at the hands of Brutus and company has tragic consequences for Brutus and the republic.

Director: Herbert Wise
Stars: Richard Pasco, Charles Gray, Keith Michell
Macbeth I (2006)
Crime | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

A contemporary retelling of Shakespeare's "Macbeth" set in the ganglands of Melbourne.

Director: Geoffrey Wright
Stars: Chloe Armstrong, Kate Bell, Miranda Nation
Othello (TV Movie 1981)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A general becomes convinced that his wife is having an affair, even though there is no evidence.

Director: Jonathan Miller
Stars: Anthony Pedley, Bob Hoskins, Geoffrey Chater
Macbeth II (2018)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.6/10 X  

Brilliant young general Macbeth pulls off a glorious victory in battle before returning to an indolent court where honours are dispensed by whim. Spurred on by prophesying drifters and an ... See full summary »

Director: Kit Monkman
Stars: Al Weaver, Wunmi Mosaku, Mark Rowley
Titus Andronicus (TV Movie 1985)
Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Roman warrior Titus Andronicus finds himself trapped in a nightmarish cycle of vengeance, misery, and bloodshed.

Director: Jane Howell
Stars: Paul Davies Prowles, Edward Hardwicke, Walter Brown
King Lear (TV Movie 1982)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

King Lear, old and tired, divides his kingdom among his daughters, giving great importance to their protestations of love for him. When Cordelia, youngest and most honest, refuses to idly ... See full summary »

Director: Jonathan Miller
Stars: John Shrapnel, Norman Rodway, Michael Kitchen
Macbeth (2013)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

As Macbeth rides home from battle three witches stop him. They tell him that he will soon rise in power, first becoming Thane of Cawdor and then King of Scotland. King Duncan has just ... See full summary »

Directors: Rob Ashford, Kenneth Branagh
Stars: David Annen, Andy Apollo, Elliot Balchin
Richard III (TV Movie 1983)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Richard of Gloucester uses murder and manipulation to claim England's throne.

Director: Jane Howell
Stars: Peter Benson, Antony Brown, David Burke
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brenda Bruce ... First Witch
Eileen Way Eileen Way ... Second Witch
Anne Dyson ... Third Witch
Mark Dignam ... Duncan
James Hazeldine ... Malcolm
Christopher Ellison ... Captain
John Rowe ... Lennox
Gawn Grainger Gawn Grainger ... Ross
Nicol Williamson ... Macbeth
Ian Hogg ... Banquo
David Lyon David Lyon ... Angus
Jane Lapotaire ... Lady Macbeth
Gordon Kane Gordon Kane ... First Messenger
Alistair Henderson Alistair Henderson ... Fleance
James Bolam ... Porter
Edit

Storyline

Macbeth and his wife murder Duncan in order to gain his crown, but the bloodbath doesn't stop there, and things supernatural combine to bring the Macbeths down. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 November 1983 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Complete Dramatic Works of William Shakespeare: Macbeth See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This episode was shot with a 360 degree cycloramic backcloth in the background which could be used as representative of a general environment, with much use made of open space. See more »

Quotes

Lady Macduff: The poor wren, the most diminutive of birds, will *fight*, her young ones in her nest, against the owl.
See more »

Connections

Version of Great Performances: Macbeth (2010) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Beautiful Production, but Slow and Weakly Cast
17 February 2007 | by tonstant viewerSee all my reviews

The good news is that the sets, costumes and lighting are close to the top of the BBC Shakespeare series. Simple, powerful and expressive. The witches are shown at the Callanish Standing Stones in the Western Isles, and the castle is distinctly Highlands. Wonderfully evocative.

The bad news is, everything else.

Macbeth has the shortest text of Shakespeare's tragedies. But not here. This is endless. Much of the line reading is slow and straight into the camera, presumably on the assumption that American schoolchildren need underlining. No thanks. In this series, only the "Pericles, Prince of Tyre" is delivered more slowly. And that one's unbearable.

Theatrical tragedy is defined as a man or woman with noble qualities who is brought down by an act of hubris. Nicol Williamson is unable to convey any positive qualities to the character of Macbeth even when mouthing noble sentiments, and gives us a psychotic thug who just deteriorates. Unlike Lear or Othello, he has no transfiguring flash of insight when facing death - in defiance of the text, this Macbeth appears to have learned nothing.

Williamson gave interviews at the time of his calamitous Hamlet saying he got no joy at all from performing Shakespeare. Indeed his Macbeth is glum, trapped and looking like he was being forced to take some very nasty medicine. He makes the verse sound as ugly as possible, and his rudimentary classical acting technique consists of opening his eyes very wide and counting up to 257 under his breath.

Jane Lapotaire's Lady Macbeth is a simpler matter. She oscillates between orgasm and tantrums, with occasional rest stops at wheedling. She is every bit as baroque as he. Things got so weird that by the time we got to Banquo's ghost at the banquet, I thought I was watching the Pod People - I fully expected their heads to pop off and little "Mars Attacks" heads to rise up out of their shoulders.

Ian Hogg is a sympathetic Banquo, but he's no warrior. Tony Doyle has a good, solid moment as Macduff when he gets the news of the murder of his wife and kids. But he is unable to sustain interest, and the rest of the cast is notably weak, ranging all the way down to a pitifully incompetent Donalbain. Just about any other BBC Shakespeare video has a more effective supporting cast than this.

The major value of the BBC Shakespeare series is in less familiar plays. "Much Ado About Nothing," "Cymbeline," "Twelfth Night," "Henry IV," "Troilus and Cressida," "Love's Labour's Lost," "Henry VIII," these are great, life-enhancing experiences and are worth seeking out.

It is a pity that so many people will never see these, only a middling "Julius Caesar," a weaker "Hamlet," an oddball "Lear," a clumsy "Romeo" and this outright disastrous "Macbeth."


10 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 16 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed