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Coriolanus [DVD] [2011]

Ralph Fiennes , Gerard Butler , Ralph Fiennes    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)
Price: 3.75 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Ralph Fiennes, Gerard Butler, Vanessa Redgrave, Brian Cox, Jessica Chastain
  • Directors: Ralph Fiennes
  • Format: PAL, Dolby, Digital Sound, Surround Sound, Anamorphic
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • 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: Lionsgate
  • DVD Release Date: 4 Jun 2012
  • Run Time: 123 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B006H11NMK
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,187 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



The common people of Rome are hungry – never has the social inequality between themselves and the wealthy ruling classes been so apparent. Riots are widespread and the people’s fury rapidly becomes focussed on the Republic’s most courageous general, Caius Martius (Ralph Fiennes), who has publicly expressed his scorn for their suffering. But, Rome is also at war with the Volsces, a neighbouring state whose guerrilla-style army is led by Martius’s sworn enemy, Tullus Aufidius (Gerard Butler). Following the latest, brazen Volscian taunt, Martius and his comrade-at-arms Titus Lartius (Dragan Micanovic) are called to a council of war by their commanding officer, General Cominius (John Kani). Rome must retaliate. Martius’s outstanding courage and leadership on the field of battle secures the Volscian city of Corioles for Rome. It is a crushing defeat for the Volscians and, in honour of his victory, Martius is awarded the title ‘Coriolanus’, meaning conqueror of Corioles. The anger of the Roman people has now subsided and Coriolanus has become a hero. With his recent triumph, Coriolanus’s politically ambitious mother Volumnia (Vanessa Redgrave) joyfully anticipates her son being elected to the powerful Senate position of Consul. Influential Roman Senator, and Coriolanus’s political mentor, Menenius (Brian Cox) encourages him. Always in the background, Coriolanus’s gentle and loving wife, Virgilia (Jessica Chastain), worries for her husband’s continued safety.

To become Consul, Coriolanus knows he must first secure the people’s support and at first he is loath to engage in the necessary glad-handing. He sees it as hypocritical and an affront to his personal honour code. Under pressure, he finally relents but, not a natural politician, he handles his canvassing without the required good grace and arouses ill feeling in his audience. His past public declarations have already established him as a threat to the people in the minds of their representatives, the Tribunes. And now the conspiratorial Tribunes, Brutus (Paul Jesson) and Sicinius (James Nesbitt) take full advantage of Coriolanus’s rapid fall from public favour to persuade voters to refuse him the office he seeks. The Tribunes campaign is further supported by an underground group of left-wing rebels, led by Cassius (Ashraf Barhom) and Tamora (Lubna Azabal), who also speak out against Coriolanus’s election. Their combined arguments work and he is defeated.

Coriolanus is enraged and his verbal retaliation leads to further public rioting. Disgraced, the Senate banishes him from Rome. Now stateless and seeking revenge for Rome’s ingratitude and treachery, Coriolanus journeys to the city of Antium, the Volscian capital and home to his enemy, Tullus Aufidius. With nothing to lose, he seeks out his old adversary and boldly offers him a choice. Aufidius can either take Coriolanus’s life or accept his help in defeating Rome. Confronted by his greatest enemy, Aufidius must decide whether to finally destroy his rival or join forces with him in battle….

Product Description

Ralph Fiennes' directorial debut transposes Shakespeare's tragedy from ancient Rome to present-day Eastern Europe, Total running time 123 mins Lionsgate DVD PAL Format, Region 2

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
64 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Convert to Coriolanus 7 Mar 2012
By Antenna TOP 500 REVIEWER
Although based on a dark, grim and bloodthirsty Shakespearean tragedy, I was very impressed by this film which I went to see with some trepidation.

Well-paced and not excessively violent (compared to what it could have been) the acting is excellent, the words spoken with such expression and clarity that the sense comes through very strongly, even to someone like me unfamiliar with the text. It does not bother me that some passages and plot details may have been omitted in the interests of making the plot easier to digest. Likewise, a dialogue which sounds at time surprisingly modern compensates for the lack of any memorable "To be or not to be"-style soliloquies which may not come across well in a film.

The modern setting is not irritating and gratuitous as is too often the case, but also enabled me to see the film's relevance to our divided and violent world. Rome is represented as a typical concrete western city, ruled by the cynical "haves" ("patricians") while the mass of "have-nots" are beginning to riot over lack of bread, although they are easily swayed by cunning politicians.

Rome is under threat from a Balkan-type community called the Volscians, against whom the professional soldier Caius Martius (Ralph Fiennes) gains a celebrated victory over the city of Corioles, thus being rewarded with the surname "Coriolanus". This leads naturally to his appointment as a consul, but "honest to a fault", he refuses to conceal his contempt for the people. His political enemies play on this to get him banished, which of course turns him from a loyal supporter of Rome to a man bent on revenge.

On a personal level, this is an interesting psychological study of pride, fanaticism and jealousy.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally Converted 23 May 2012
By Dr. Delvis Memphistopheles TOP 100 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Fell asleep the first time round. The problem is the dialogue, rich with innuendo, cross referencing, psychological insights whilst also carrying the plot, I became stuck trying to digest one line, grappling with the meaning and then another is thrown, then by the time that one gets unpicked, the result is I am lost within the plot.

There is a simple solution however- turn the hard of hearing sub titles on. When I watched it again, the film suddenly came alive. I could rapidly assimilate the hidden meanings and then follow the narrative. I would have dreaded seeing this in the cinema without the "cheat."

The film travels to the Balkans, carrying the seeds and kernel of the tragedies. A psychological portrayal of a warrior, betrayed by politicians who appear cleverer, PR men, an ascending country in crisis, a growing gulf between rich and poor, rioting, civil war...a vision of a world that has passed or one yet to come.

All revolving around the power of women, whilst not wielding the sword, have a greater will to power, using their sons to revenge their life humiliation. Sons become pawns within their struggle to vent their internal rage, harnessing to the feelings about a man who feels he has been wronged, seeking emotional compensation for his "hurt," the snub of power delivered by the plebs.

The narrative is wrapped in the revenge motif, all entrapped within in a sociopathic state. When this becomes clear, the violence takes on a shinier meaning and Shakespeare ascends any video game drama. Even cut down into bite size chunks, like this, it careers over anything emanating from over the pond where dreams are manufactured to satiate any cudgel to a connection to reality.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Astonishingly good... 10 Oct 2012
This is a truly remarkable adaptation of Coriolanus, and a brilliant directorial debut for Ralph Fiennes. Fiennes as Coriolanus, especially in the latter half when he joins forces with Aufidius in Antium, possesses a similar sort of disturbing and charismatic energy as Brando as Kurtz in 'Apocalypse Now'. Butler, Redgrave, Chastain and Cox all give stellar performances, and I was captivated from the opening sequence right through to the finale. Excellent stuff.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely amazing! What a production ... 2 Jan 2013
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
Shakespeare never ages and without doubt Ralph Fiennes proves that categorically - what an incredible 'eastern european' interpretation of this not so well known play. I studied this for my A Level English Literature and I've since seen Kenneth Brannah take the lead role too and although so different, both presentations were fabulous.
For me, it was a must for my collection.
Coriolanus lives - and Ralph Fiennes is amazing!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
After having had the displeasure of sitting through Romeo + Juliet (not one of my favourite plays to start with) I have always approached Shakespeare for the modern age with a degree of caution and trepidation. Fortunately this magnificent effort is several orders of magnitude better, and Ralph Fiennes has done a sterling job of adapting one of the lesser known plays for the screen.

Coriolanus is a tale of pride and ambition. Ralph plays the Roman general Caius Martius, named Coriolanus by a grateful senate for his defeat of the Volscians and capture of the city of Corioles. Soon he is standing for the position of Consul, which would bring much honour, but the proud and noble man is dismissive of the general populace, who turn against him and in shame he is driven from Rome. He travels to the heartland of his Volscian enemies and is soon marching at the head of their army against Rome itself.

Ralph Fiennes both directs and stars in this excellent adaptation. I have not seen the play previously, so cannot comment on the faithfulness of the text. But the setting is a triumph. Updated to a modern Italy at war with a Balkan state, this has a feel of immediacy and relevance. The modern look sits well with the sixteenth century dialogue, which is easy to follow and well enunciated. The use of framing devices, such as TV interviews, is a stroke of genius and I have to say that the sight of Jon Snow spouting Shakespearian dialogue with aplomb was an unexpected and welcome surprise. The setting and the devices used are totally fitting to the play and allow us to see the central message - the consequence of pride - clearly. It also makes the play accessible to people who are more used to big thrill cinema and war films, and not so fussed by sixteenth century tragedies.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Not pretty which is why it works.
Sharp,hard, grim and very much military,,, 400 years old but still modern. Interesting hardline intepretation. Worth the purchase.
Published 5 days ago by dontaskpcandy
5.0 out of 5 stars great price, amazing Shakespeare
new item, great price, amazing Shakespeare adaptation
Published 6 days ago by Luis Benkard
2.0 out of 5 stars I had to watch this in two halves as throughout the film everybody is...
Ignore the trailer and the reviews on the cover which talk of 'Brilliant', I had to watch this in two halves as throughout the film everybody is talking like Yoda (It's all in... Read more
Published 7 days ago by Mr B
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic version of Coriolanus
Fantastic version of Coriolanus, a play whose simplicity of plot and emphasis on action and military honour translates well into this modernized setting. Fiennes is excellent.
Published 9 days ago by Conor Fitzgerald
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant modern rendering of one of Shakespeare's lesser known...
This is a modern rendering of one of Shakespeare's lesser known tragedies, one that helps the viewer connect the moral issues raised in the play to our nowadays background. Read more
Published 20 days ago by Isabella
2.0 out of 5 stars The actors dialogue is ridiculous !!
I don't know how the two lead actors could keep straight faces when acting in this film. It is certainly not suited for a seamless action film especialy when they are hand to hand... Read more
Published 26 days ago by DGNB
1.0 out of 5 stars One star = I hated(d) it? Whilst I would not go so far as to say /...
I bought this film expecting a classy actioner, what with the cast, however what I got was a cast speaking in Shakespearean dialogue. I'm sorry but that has no place in any film. Read more
Published 2 months ago by BigAl82
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Re-Setting of a Lesser-known Shakespeare
I loved this film!

Its one of Shakespeare's not-as-famous plays, but I have no idea why!! Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mr. T. E. Rochester
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!
I wanted to watch this version before seeing Tom Hiddleston's Coriolanus at the Donmar Warehouse Theatre.

I thought it was excellent - bloody and action packed. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Alison
4.0 out of 5 stars Brian Cox steals the show
Interesting drama in a modern setting - not quite sure that the modernised mob works as well as it needs to. Read more
Published 3 months ago by bananana
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