12 user 1 critic

The Tempest (1998)

An adaptation of Shakespeare's classic is set in the Mississippi bayous during the Civil War.


Jack Bender


James S. Henerson (as James Henerson)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Fonda ... Gideon Prosper
John Glover ... Anthony Prosper
Harold Perrineau ... Ariel
Katherine Heigl ... Miranda Prosper
John Pyper-Ferguson ... Gator Man
Eddie Mills ... Captain Frederick Allen
Dennis Redfield ... Wilfried 'Willy' Gonzo
Donzaleigh Abernathy ... Mambo Azaleigh
Jon Huffman ... General Grant
Tom Nowicki ... General Sherman
Rhoda Griffis ... Sophie Dupree
Lonnie Hamilton Lonnie Hamilton ... Old Ariel
Rachel Crouch Rachel Crouch ... Young Miranda
Alex Van ... Lead Raider
Tim Parati ... Raider


An adaptation of Shakespeare's classic is set in the Mississippi bayous during the Civil War.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Anthony Prosper: [Gideon is aiming his rifle at him] Do your worst, brother.
Gideon Prosper: That is the problem. You are my brother.
See more »


Version of Yellow Sky (1948) See more »

User Reviews

A Wonderous Travesty
21 July 2000 | by tedgSee all my reviews

Holy Cow! Don't watch this unless you collect creative travesties.

Superficially, this is a stew of the same persiflage usually served up on family TV: kindly voodoo projected as Luke Skywalker's Force; a protective father who goes through painful doubt; innocent pubescence; racial justice; magical help for the North during the Civil War (no lie); leavened with all sorts of minor platitudes.

Probably, this is no worse than thousands of slapdash dramas. What makes this interesting, almost hypnotizing, is how it rests on the rough skeleton of Shakespeare's play. It blindly tramples, it innocently debases arguably the best play of arguably the greatest writer in English.

Gosh, I cannot even describe the arbitrary transmutations used to fit this simple diorama: Arial a slave, Frederick a Union officer, Prosper a planter who learned voodoo from his slaves... it all hardly matters. One interesting thing: The Tempest was the first great work of literature about the American experience. Almost 400 years later, it still has some of the most profound and complex visions of dealing with non-Europeans, slaves and the forces of nature in the New World. All of that rich content is waiting to be leveraged, dummied down if need be. All is ignored here.

It is as if the Hardy Boys were named Tom and Huck and the plot was about petty racial dramas in painting a fence. Wonderous.

And Peter Fonda? This was right after the interesting Ulee's Gold, where he actually acted. No sign of that here.

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Release Date:

13 December 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La tempĂȘte See more »

Filming Locations:

Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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