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Hamlet [DVD] [2009]

162 customer reviews

Price: £4.40 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: David Tennant, Patrick Stewart, Penny Downie, Mariah Gale, Edward Bennett
  • Directors: Gregory Doran
  • Writers: William Shakespeare
  • Format: PAL, Widescreen, Dolby, Digital Sound, Colour
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: 2entertain
  • DVD Release Date: 4 Jan. 2010
  • Run Time: 182 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (162 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002PXHRFQ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,480 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Director Gregory Doran’s modern-dress Hamlet for the Royal Shakespeare Company features David Tennant’s thrilling, mercurial and often very funny central performance.

This visually sumptuous screen version, filmed on location with the original stage cast, captures the atmosphere and excitement of the critically acclaimed production. Patrick Stewart won an Olivier Award for his performance as Claudius, King of Denmark. Penny Downie plays Hamlet’s mother Gertrude and Mariah Gale is the tragic Ophelia. Edward Bennett is Ophelia’s avenging brother Laertes, and Oliver Ford Davies takes the role of their father Polonius.

Special Features
  • Audio Commentary with Gregory Doran, Sebastian Grant and Chris Seager
  • The Making of Hamlet

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

107 of 110 people found the following review helpful By John Parkes on 2 Jan. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I would say ,it is a must buy for me . I am really pleased the BBC got together with the RSC and filmed this production ,that I saw in Stratford in the summer.I wish the RSC had done the same with the Tempest that toured britain with the RSC also last year.First of all I had "issues " with Hamlet in Stratford, I felt Tennant lacked passion , anger , and his antic disposition pretend madness, to me was un- convincing.He seemed flat in his delivery of important lines. This malaise also seemed to be present in Gertrude who at one point proclaimed "O Hamlet thou has cleft my heart in twain " as if O its raining again outside.However , I sat down on boxing day to watch it on the BBC and was moved to tears.I thought it was great.Tennant in speaking the to be or not to be speech with close camera work , nailed the whole peice.This dvd will deliver those moments when such a familier play will offer another set of insights into the interpretation of key moments in the play.I have everything on DVD concerning Hamlet , this production ranks one of the best.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By The Dude on 18 Jan. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This particular production WILL become the definitive Hamlet for a generation. People will say this is purely for Tennant and Stewart. For the most part they will be right, but perhaps for the wrong reasons. Undoubtedly the pair have avid followers from their many years in science fiction, and here they feed off their previous roles. Rather than detract from their performances, I say that experience enriches it. Here both play similar characters to what they've become famous for (though clearly with a twist - especially in the case of Stewart, who plays the villain with elegance) they appear completely at ease as Hamlet and Claudius, when it seems other members of the cast are not so comfortable. Until Ophelia went mad I kept wondering 'what on earth does THIS Hamlet see in her?', and Laertes had no strength of character, no real sense of threat - even when he pulled a gun on Claudius. As for Rosencrantz and Guildenstern...anyone who has scene Tim Roth and Gary Oldman in the roles will probably consider this pair a minor let down.

However, Hamlet, Gertrude, and Claudius demanded my full attention every second they remained on screen. The time spent watching them was a pleasure that moved me both to fright and laughter - some times in the same scene. By the last I was reduced to tears, as it fitting for the finale of a tragedy (though I admit I'm not usually one to reach for the tissue box).

There has never been another RSC production where I've felt so jealous of all those who saw it on stage. You lucky, lucky swine.
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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful By L. Parker on 13 Feb. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I saw this as a fan of David Tennant and a lover of all things Shakespeare, and I loved every minute! In addition to David Tennant bringing an exciting new reading of the title character -- adding humor where I'd never seen it and new interpretations of lines which have become practically stale with repitition, I loved Oliver Ford Davies' Polonius. It was an entirely different Polonius, and it was like all of the sudden he made sense, which was surprising and refreshing! And it was very well shot on location, so didn't feel at all like a filmed stage production. If you like Hamlet or David Tennant or both, see this!!
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67 of 72 people found the following review helpful By Elsa on 27 Dec. 2009
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Gripping, tragic, a bit funny and utterly absorbing. The best Shakespeare production I have ever seen.

It goes without saying that David Tennant's Hamlet is outstanding. The rest of the cast are just as good, especially Mariah Gale as Ophelia, her madness is superb.

The production team also deserve honours. The set is beautiful, costume perfect and props ingenious. It has been translated well from the stage, remaining very much a play but at the same time incorporating some clever cinematic devices that keep the eye interested.

All in all superb. 183 minutes will feel like 20.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Unal Norman on 11 Dec. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is an excellent production, with superb performance from all the actors, and a highly experienced director who certanly knows his Shakespeare well. It is so refreshing to find many new interpretations of the actual play in small details,to name a few, like Claudius being prompted by Gertrude about Wittenberg, Polonius, sotte voce, prompting Laertes to talk to the King, Hamlet's reflection on the cracked mirror, the gravedigger checking his watch during the funeral,etc. Some lines from the play were very discretely omitted, rather than omitting certain scenes to make the film more acceptable for modern audieces who are not used to sitting for the three and a half hours of the original play. The characters are more human creatures than they are in most productions, therefore one can relate to them better. Hamlet is no longer the Prince with "the courtier's, soldier's, scholar's, eye, tongue, sword" but a young man in excruciating pain; Claudius is not just "the smiling villain" but also the man carrying the burden of his sin, and with a shrug resigning to his fate; Gertrude is not a feather brained woman manipuated by Claudius but a woman in her own right; Polonius, though the revered councillor of state, is an interfering, pompous and " a foolish prattling knave". Ophilia is no longer the traditional "nymph" but has come out straight from Shakespeare's Sonnet #130, "My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun". The film follows Arthur Miller's views about the tragedy of the common man, and presents all the characters as one of us. However, if you are a traditional Hamlet lover, this film may not be for you.
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