6.5/10
22,797
237 user 96 critic

A Midsummer Night's Dream (1999)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Fantasy, Romance | 14 May 1999 (USA)
Lovers' lives are complicated by city law, feuding faerie royalty, and... love.

Director:

Michael Hoffman

Writers:

William Shakespeare (play), Michael Hoffman (screenplay)

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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Kline ... Nick Bottom
Michelle Pfeiffer ... Titania
Rupert Everett ... Oberon
Stanley Tucci ... Puck
Calista Flockhart ... Helena
Anna Friel ... Hermia
Christian Bale ... Demetrius
Dominic West ... Lysander
David Strathairn ... Theseus
Sophie Marceau ... Hippolyta
Roger Rees ... Peter Quince
Max Wright ... Robin Starveling
Gregory Jbara ... Snug
Bill Irwin ... Tom Snout
Sam Rockwell ... Francis Flute
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Storyline

Shakespeare's intertwined love polygons begin to get complicated from the start--Demetrius and Lysander both want Hermia but she only has eyes for Lysander. Bad news is, Hermia's father wants Demetrius for a son-in-law. On the outside is Helena, whose unreturned love burns hot for Demetrius. Hermia and Lysander plan to flee from the city under cover of darkness but are pursued by an enraged Demetrius (who is himself pursued by an enraptured Helena). In the forest, unbeknownst to the mortals, Oberon and Titania (King and Queen of the faeries) are having a spat over a servant boy. The plot twists up when Oberon's head mischief-maker, Puck, runs loose with a flower which causes people to fall in love with the first thing they see upon waking. Throw in a group of labourers preparing a play for the Duke's wedding (one of whom is given a donkey's head and Titania for a lover by Puck) and the complications become fantastically funny. Written by Lordship <lordship@juno.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Love makes fools of us all. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

UK | Italy | USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

14 May 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,285,620, 16 May 1999, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$16,071,990, 29 August 1999
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby Digital | DTS | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The action of the play is transplanted from Athens, Greece to the fictional Italian city of Monte Athens. See more »

Goofs

The opening text tells us that the movie is set at "the turn of the 19th century," which would be around 1800. It meant to say "the turn of the 20th century," as the movie is clearly set around 1900. See more »

Quotes

Bottom the Weaver: I have had a most rare vision / I have had a dream / Past the wit of man to say what dream it was. / Man is but an ass if he go about to expound this dream. / Methought I was... / There's no man can tell what. / Methought I was... / Methought I had... / Man is but a patched fool if he will offer to say what I had.
See more »

Connections

Version of A Midsummer Night's Dream (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Intermezzo
(uncredited)
from the opera "Cavalleria Rusticana"
Music by Pietro Mascagni
See more »

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User Reviews

 
One Movie Buff's Opinion
12 December 2004 | by Daniel Halton BillingsSee all my reviews

I have seen criticism of this movie saying that the language should have been changed to our post-modern English instead of being the original late-middle/early modern English that Shakespeare used. But those who say that miss the point that what makes these plays so magnificent IS the language that Shakespeare used, and to change it would be to ruin the movie.

Anyways, the acting is marvelous, as it should be from such a cast as this. Michelle Pfeiffer plays the part of Titania with the utmost perfection. Kevin Kline as Nick Bottom is equally as good, and the two end up having a chemistry that is unmistakable (even if he is an ass at this point).

The directing is also great - almost as good as the acting, if not as good. Costumes, sets, everything with exception of there being headlights on the bicycles, is perfect. Michael Hoffman truly pulled of a great feat with this movie, and I would recommend it to anyone.

Also, on a side note, if you have trouble understanding the language, though it be English, watch the DVD and turn on the subtext.


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