6.0/10
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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)

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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
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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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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 June 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Amlet 2000 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, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,568,749, 13 August 2000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

double A Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Hamlet stops the limo after deciding not to kill his uncle, Claudius, he exits at a theater billing the Best Musical of 1998 - the live-action stage version of "The Lion King". "The Lion King" is reportedly inspired by "Hamlet". See more »

Goofs

In the scene when Polonius gives parting advice to Laertes, the reflection of the microphone boom can be seen in the chromium décor of the room. See more »

Quotes

Hamlet: The play's the thing, with which I'll catch the conscience of the king.
See more »

Connections

Version of Camera Three: Joseph Papp's Hamlet: Part 1 (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Hamlet Symphonic Poem No. 8
Written by Franz Liszt
Performed by Gewandhausorchester Leipzig
Conducted by Kurt Masur
Courtesy of EMI Classics
Under License from EMI-Capitol Music Special Markets
See more »

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User Reviews

I didn't like it
14 February 2003 | by OliviaFSee all my reviews

I only liked two things about this film: 1) The performance by Kyle McLachlan as Claudius and 2) The play within the play.

But first, let me say from the outset that on the whole, this version of Hamlet was flat and uninspired. Ethan Hawke practically croaked his lines all the way through which rendered much of the poetic dialogue in the play as dull and meaningless. Secondly, the director tried so hard to be creative with the modern surroundings, and yet it did not gel in this movie. WHY in God's name would Hamlet and Laeters duel in a swordfight in a modern day setting? WHY would a country such as England execute two innocent citizens due to a message in a laptop? And why is it that in practically EVERY Hamlet movie I've seen, including this one, does Horatio just stand off to the side with a disinterested look on his face and not show shock and emotion when Hamlet is dying? Everyone just seems to stand around staring at the dying character.

Reciting "To be or not to be" in a blockbuster video shop completely misses the point. Sure, in this movie it was Hamlet's world of movies and violence, but it failed to really show what was going on in his mind. We rarely get to see his anger or his confusion or his sharp intellect which was the essence of Hamlet, instead we get this grunge brooding portrait ala Reality Bites type character.

Kudos should go to Kyle McLachlan for not falling into the trap of delivering his lines without meaning - he delivered every line flawlessly and made it sound so convincing in a modern setting. His version of Claudius as the charming yet smarmy businessman with devilish like intentions was probably the best version of Claudius I have seen for a long while.


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