It's a hot summer day in 1933 in South Philly, where 12-year old Gennaro lives with his widowed mom and his ailing grandpa, who sits outside holding tight to his last quarter, which he's ... See full summary »
Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio,
In 16th century Venice, when a merchant must default on a large loan from an abused Jewish moneylender for a friend with romantic ambitions, the bitterly vengeful creditor demands a gruesome payment instead.
Director Al Pacino juxtaposes scenes from Richard III, scenes of rehearsals for Richard III, and sessions where parties involved discuss the play, the times that shaped the play, and the events that happened at the time the play is set. Interviews with mostly British actors are also included, attempting to explain why American actors have more problems performing Shakespearean plays than they do.Written by
Ron Kerrigan <email@example.com>
Before finally settling on a studio, Al Pacino's final choices were Miramax Films and Fox Searchlight. Harvey Weinstein who had seen the film in its rawest footage, loved the film and really wanted it badly. Pacino chose Fox because Tom Rothman who was the then head of Fox Searchlight loved the film as well and oversaw the project until he was promoted to the head of the studio. It was a decision that Pacino regretted as he was left alone without any basic help as the studio's new regime was forming into place. See more »
In discussion, Pacino and co. are studying the "*G* of Edward's heirs the murderer shall be," and decide, since it's supposed to refer to Clarence, that they'll change it to "'C" of Edward's heir's." The problem is, the prophecy very deliberately refers to Richard, Duke of GLOUCESTER and Clarence, Duke of GEORGE. With "G" the prophecy is true. If you change it to "C" the prophecy becomes false, and can no longer refer to two people. See more »
To me, "Looking for Richard" is about one man's love of Shakespearean plays. This film is his vehicle to share that admiration with as many people as possible. I'm glad Mr. Pacino made this film, because he is so well-respected by such a wide variety of people, that his presence will draw them first to this film and then hopefully to the theatre.
I found the film extremely interesting. If you're at all interested in theatre, you'll enjoy watching the cast debate during rehearsals. It gave me a greater insight into what's involved in actually putting on a play. Usually, you just see the finished product, and they make it look so easy. I was relieved to learn from the film that the actors and directors struggle with the text of the plays too. So you don't have to feel bad if you don't understand all the dialogue - you will get the gist of it. The film is simply urging people to give Shakespeare another chance. You might like it, or you might not, but at least you'll have given it a shot. And if you do like it, it'll keep you busy for years.
Since most people are initially exposed to Shakespeare in high school, I imagine that's where their phobia originates. I had an English teacher who was passionate about Shakespeare, and he instilled that appreciation in me. Unfortunately, everyone isn't as lucky. Boring classes turned them off, and that's all they'll ever experience of Shakespeare. They are missing so much. I hope all the English teachers out there who are less than comfortable with teaching Shakespeare will show this film to their classes to counteract any Shakespeare phobia-inducing incidents.
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