7.1/10
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Titus (1999)

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0:41 | Trailer
Titus returns victorious from war, only to plant the seeds of future turmoil for himself and his family.

Director:

Julie Taymor

Writers:

William Shakespeare (play), Julie Taymor (screenplay)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Osheen Jones Osheen Jones ... Young Lucius
Dario D'Ambrosi ... Clown
Anthony Hopkins ... Titus
Jessica Lange ... Tamora
Raz Degan ... Alarbus
Jonathan Rhys Meyers ... Chiron
Matthew Rhys ... Demetrius
Harry Lennix ... Aaron
Angus Macfadyen ... Lucius
Kenny Doughty ... Quintus
Blake Ritson ... Mutius
Colin Wells Colin Wells ... Martius
Ettore Geri Ettore Geri ... Priest
Alan Cumming ... Saturninus
James Frain ... Bassianus
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Storyline

War begets revenge. Victorious General Titus Andronicus (Sir Anthony Hopkins) returns to Rome with hostages: Tamora (Jessica Lange), Queen of the Goths, and her sons. He orders the eldest hewn to appease the Roman dead. He declines the proffered Emperor's crown, nominating Saturninus (Alan Cumming), the last ruler's venal elder son. Saturninus, to spite his brother Bassianus (James Frain), demands the hand of Lavinia (Laura Fraser), Titus' daughter. When Bassianus, Lavinia, and Titus' sons flee in protest, Titus stands against them and slays one of his own. Saturninus marries the honey-tongued Tamora, who vows vengeance against Titus. The ensuing maelstrom serves up tongues, hands, rape, adultery, racism, and Goth-meat pie. There's irony in which two sons survive. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The fall of an empire is nothing compared to the descent of man. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violent and sexual images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Italy | USA

Language:

English | Latin

Release Date:

11 February 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Tit Andronik See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$22,313, 26 December 1999

Gross USA:

$2,007,290

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,259,680
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Writer, Producer, and Director Julie Taymor conceived of Saturninus (Alan Cumming) as being from the 1930s, and rooted in Fascism, while Bassianus (James Frain) came from the 1950s, and was concerned with conservatism. This is reflected in the cars, in which they travel, and the clothes their supporters wear during the political speeches. See more »

Goofs

The position of the spoon as Lucius jams it down Saturninus' throat. See more »

Quotes

Tamora: The worst done to her the better loved of me.
See more »

Connections

References Popeye the Sailor Meets Sindbad the Sailor (1936) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Madness
19 December 2004 | by thnielsSee all my reviews

Titus Andronicus is the strangest of Shakespeare's tragedies and the tragedy which most underlines the modern day observation that his tragedies are often comic and his comedies fairly tragic. Particularly the final chain murder has always made me laugh in the theatrical renditions and this one is definitely up to par. As for the rest of the movie, it is a mix of beautiful images, wonderful acting, rotten acting and failed attempts to surrealize an already surreal play. Anthony Hopkins is almost perfect as Titus, Colm Feore pretty good as his righteous brother and Jessica Lange intolerable as Tamora, while most of the rest range from mildly indifferent to pretty okay. As for Aaron in the shape of Harry Lennix he is actually quite convincing albeit not quite in the same league as Kenneth Brannagh who did the all time finest Shakespeare mischievery playing Iago in Othello. But Brannagh as a Moor would be downright laughable - so a compromise well turned out.

The modernisation of Shakespeare is in my opinion an impossibility. Some of his plays have a plot which makes a good basis for a modern production, but Shakespeare's absolute forté is his language and his linguistic jokes and acting in old English requires settings true to the play. That said, I think some of the scenes worked better in this surrealistic environment than they would have - scenes like Titus assembling his men for the shot at the Gods, or the messenger returning his sons' heads in a theater truck. That was novel.

As for the overall feel of this movie, only one word suffices: Madness.

  • Thomas Nielsen


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