7.5/10
18,964
130 user 37 critic

Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (1990)

Two minor characters from the play 'Hamlet' stumble around unaware of their scripted lives and unable to deviate from them.

Director:

Tom Stoppard

Writer:

Tom Stoppard
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gary Oldman ... Rosencrantz
Tim Roth ... Guildenstern
Richard Dreyfuss ... The Player
Livio Badurina Livio Badurina ... Tragedian
Tomislav Maretic Tomislav Maretic ... Tragedian
Mare Mlacnik Mare Mlacnik ... Tragedian
Serge Soric Serge Soric ... Tragedian (as Srdjan Soric)
Mladen Vasary Mladen Vasary ... Tragedian
Zeljko Vukmirica Zeljko Vukmirica ... Tragedian
Branko Zavrsan Branko Zavrsan ... Tragedian
Joanna Roth Joanna Roth ... Ophelia
Iain Glen ... Hamlet
Donald Sumpter ... Claudius
Joanna Miles ... Gertrude
Ljubo Zecevic Ljubo Zecevic ... Osric
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Storyline

Showing events from the point of view of two minor characters from Hamlet, men who have no control over their destiny, this film examines fate and asks if we can ever really know what's going on? Are answers as important as the questions? Will Rosencrantz and Guildenstern (or Guildenstern and Rosencrantz) manage to discover the source of Hamlet's malaise as requested by the new king? Will the mysterious players who are strolling around the castle reveal the secrets they evidently know? And whose serve is it? Written by Mark Thompson <mrt@oasis.icl.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 February 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Eles Morreram See more »

Filming Locations:

Slovenia See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$739,104
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rumor has been that this film received zero stars from Roger Ebert. In fact his review was mixed, but at the time Ebert's newspaper review columns set aside the usual five star rating scale in favor for the thumbs up/thumbs down signifier of his popular TV show. Because of this, movies which received the "thumbs down" rating in his newspaper articles, have been misinterpreted as zero star reviews by aggregate websites. See more »

Goofs

Throughout the movie there are scenes where day suddenly changes to night and vice versa. This is a running gag of Tom Stoppard plays which often have "time jumps" written into the stage directions. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are riding horses down a path - they pause]
Rosencrantz: [to Guildenstern] Umm, uh...
[Guildenstern rides away, and Rosencrantz follows. Rosencrantz spots a gold coin on the ground]
Rosencrantz: [to horse] Whoa - whoa, whoa.
[Gets off horse and starts flipping the coin]
Rosencrantz: Hmmm. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads. Heads.
[Guildenstern grabs the coin, checks both sides, then tosses it back to Rosencrantz]
Rosencrantz: ...
[...]
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Connections

Featured in Changing Stages (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Echoes
(uncredited)
Performed by Pink Floyd
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User Reviews

 
The audience knows what to expect and that is all they are prepared to believe...
12 April 2006 | by securityfraudSee all my reviews

I first saw the film version of R and G are Dead over a year ago, it is a set text on my course and our prof showed it because we live in the middle of no where civilization-wise and had no other way to understand the action. In a class with 21 16-19 year olds trying to catch the witty banter so important to the play was an irritating struggle so eventually I gave up and focused on just reading it and understanding the main techniques Stoppard used. Then last week my other English prof offered to show the film again, I jumped at the chance and yesterday I got to see it all the way through without interruptions. I loved it from top to bottom, everything was perfect, I was upset that I had been denied the experience a year ago but was delighted that I had that second chance to see it. The three things that I think make the film so wonderful are: the acting, the connection between R and G, and the script it self drawn so well from stage to screen. Scene that are partially Hamlet, partially R and G worked so well, the Shakespearian actors meshed so well with the more modern R and G which gave everything a congruity, from one scene to another nothing was lacking. The sensation of being lost was conveyed so well by Tim Roth and Gary Oldman, the way they always wind up in the same room in the castle and just shrug it off was spectacular, it really conveyed the sense of absurd reality. I was in awe of how well the two actors worked together, they seemed combined, just as intended in the play, and played off each other beautifully. The play itself came alive on screen, certain lines just seemed to stick out and summarize Stoppard's whole idea behind it. The chief tragedian's line I quoted as the title to this comment was spoken beautifully by Dreyfus and the later line about all the directions on a compass encapsulated the main ideas of the play excellently... All in all it was a wonderful experience and I adored it, I am so happy I finally got my chance to see this wonderful film and I suggest to anyone that if they can see this film and be open to it, it certainly isn't standard (which is the idea of absurdism) but it is wonderful and enjoyable. Also don't be scared to laugh at it, some people consider it high art or comparable to Shakespeare and think laughing is unwarranted, this is ridiculous there are scenes which are laugh out loud funny and they should be laughed at, nothing is above being laughed at in theatre, so relax and enjoy... one note though, read Hamlet first if you haven't or watch the film so you get the general idea, R and G are Dead makes no sense without a background knowledge of Hamlet, but I would suggest skipping the Kenneth Brannagh twelve hour snooze-fest version... but that is for another comment...


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