Roman Polanski's adaptation of the Shakespearean tragedy Macbeth remains one of the most infamous for a number of reasons: the copious amounts of bloody gore, its expert use of location settings (filmed in North Wales) and Lady Macbeth's nude sleepwalking scene. Despite its notoriety, though, this does remain one of the more compelling film adaptations of the Scottish tragedy, if one of the more pessimistic takes on the story of Macbeth and his overreaching ambition. If you think the play is normally a bit of a downer, you haven't seen Polanski's bleak version of it,... made in reaction to the murder of his wife, Sharon Tate, by the Manson "family". Jon Finch (Hitchcock's Frenzy) is a forceful Macbeth, bringing out the Scot's warrior instincts, and Francesca Annis is a memorable Lady Macbeth but the main thrust of the film belongs to Polanski's and noted British playwright and critic Kenneth Tynan's take on the play: extremely violent, nihilistic and visceral; this is down-in-the-dirt, no-holds-barred Shakespeare, not fussy costume drama. Pay close attention to the end, a silent coda that puts a chilling twist on all the action that has come beforehand and foreshadows more tragedy to come. --Mark Englehart [show more]
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Please note this is a region 2 DVD and will require a region 2 (Europe) or region Free DVD Player in order to play. Roman Polanski presents his nightmarish vision of Shakespeare's classic tragedy about the lust for power-and its bloody consequences. Jon Finch is Macbeth, the Scottish war hero whose insane ambitionunleashes a cycle of violence. Prompted by the supernatural prophecy of three witches, Macbeth is goaded by his Lady (Francesca Annis) into slaying King Duncan (Nicholas Selby) and assuming his throne. Macbeth plunges further into murder and moral decay to keep the unsteady crown on his head. Whilehis wife crumbles away in guilt and madness, the haunted Macbeth fights to prevent another dark forecast which may doom him. Filmed in rugged North Wales, Polanski's MACBETH is a tale told by a master, full of sound and fury-and genius! Actors: Jon Finch, Francesca Annis, Martin Shaw, Terence Bayler, John Stride Directors: Roman Polanski Writers: Roman Polanski, Kenneth Tynan, William Shakespeare Producers: Andrew Braunsberg, Hugh M. Hefner, Timothy Burrill, Victor Lownes Format: Subtitled, PAL Language: English Subtitles: Arabic, Danish, Czech, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek Dubbed: French, German, Italian, Spanish Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.) Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1 Number of discs: 1 Classification: 15 Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment DVD Release Date: 27 May 2002 Run Time: 134 minutes
Roman Polanski directs this adaptation of Shakespeare's tragedy starring Jon Finch as the Scottish nobleman who is persuaded to usurp the kingship by the prophecy of three witches and his ambitious wife (Francesca Annis). As one murder follows another, however, his own doom beckons. The cast also includes Martin Shaw, Nicholas Selby and John Stride.