5.9/10
8,903
169 user 91 critic

Hamlet (2000)

Modern-day New York City adaptation of Shakespeare's immortal story about Hamlet's plight to avenge his father's murder.

Director:

Michael Almereyda

Writers:

William Shakespeare (play), Michael Almereyda (screen adaptation)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ethan Hawke ... Hamlet
Kyle MacLachlan ... Claudius
Diane Venora ... Gertrude
Sam Shepard ... Ghost
Bill Murray ... Polonius
Liev Schreiber ... Laertes
Julia Stiles ... Ophelia
Karl Geary ... Horatio
Paula Malcomson ... Marcella
Steve Zahn ... Rosencrantz
Dechen Thurman ... Guildenstern
Rome Neal Rome Neal ... Barnardo
Jeffrey Wright ... Gravedigger
Paul Bartel ... Osric
Casey Affleck ... Fortinbras
Learn more

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Storyline

New York, 2000. A specter in the guise of the newly-dead CEO of Denmark Corporation appears to Hamlet, tells of murder most foul, demands revenge, and identifies the killer as Claudius, the new head of Denmark, Hamlet's uncle and now step-father. Hamlet must determine if the ghost is truly his father, and if Claudius did the deed. To buy time, Hamlet feigns madness; to catch his uncle's conscience, he invites him to watch a film he's made that shows a tale of murder. Finally convinced of Claudius's guilt, Hamlet must avenge his father. Claudius now knows Hamlet is a threat and even uses Ophelia, Hamlet's love, in his own plots against the young man. Murder will out? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The only lines in the movie which are not from the original play are messages played by machines, or when the GraveDigger is singing a song ("All Along the Watchtower"). See more »

Goofs

In Gertrude's bedroom, just after Hamlet kills Polonius, a boom mic is reflected in the windows. See more »

Quotes

Ghost: I am thy father's spirit.
See more »


Soundtracks

Hamlet
Written by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performed by Narodowa Orkiestra Symfoniczna Polskiego Radia w Katowicach (as The Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra)
Courtesy of Naxos of America Inc.
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User Reviews

A good film... but not necessarily good Shakespeare!
6 February 2001 | by nkbaharSee all my reviews

I consider myself a bit of a Shakespeare purist and so put off seeing this film for quite a while. I really wish I'd seen it sooner. All the other comments here about the mangling of the language, cutting of the script to an almost incomprehensible extent, the kind of grungey contrivedness of the whole thing etc etc, are all true, but at the same time the film has little glimmers of something more. The film must be one of the shortest Hamlets ever, and moves along at real speed. The cinematography is beautiful and the juxtaposing of modern images with the text (eg Hamlet's soliloquy being performed whilst he watches James Dean, the rebel without a cause) throws up (almost in spite of itself) some interesting ideas of how the director considers Hamlet. The modern feel works surprisingly well (although it *does* occassionally jar), and throws up a lot of the themes in Hamlet as being particularly relevant today.

The acting is all okay, with a few amazing exceptions -- Liev Schrieber as Laertes really stands out, and Julia Stiles is good too. Kyle Maclachlan makes a very sinister Claudius, and Ethan Hawke is okay, although I couldn't work out whether his Hamlet was pretending to be mad or really was, but this film really belongs to the supporting cast who are all pretty sound.

Good, if you're in the mood for it. If you can't bear the thought of anything being cut or "reinterpreted" in a hit-and-miss way then avoid like the plague!

8 stars (if you like this kind of new Shakespeare) 2 stars (if you believe Hamlet should be done formally, lengthily and in tights)


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 June 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Hamlet See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$62,253, 14 May 2000

Gross USA:

$1,577,287

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,046,433
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

double A Films See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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