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Othello [DVD] [1990]

4.5 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Ian McKellen, Imogen Stubbs, Willard White, Zoe Wanamker, Marsha Hunt
  • Directors: Trevor Nunn
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: U
  • Studio: Metrodome
  • DVD Release Date: 17 Nov. 2003
  • Run Time: 205 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000BZNJT
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 43,825 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description

Product Description

This 1989 RSC production of Othello features a superlative, multi award-winning performance by the great Sir Ian McKellen as the dastardly Iago, alongside a rich and vivid portrayal of the eponymous hero by Jamaican operatic bass Willard White and a mould-breaking interpretation of Desdemona by director Trevor Nunn’s future wife, Imogen Stubbs. With far fewer characters than Shakespeare’s other tragedies and no subplots, Othello has an unparalleled simplicity, which this version brilliantly captures. It is the story of the doomed love between Desdemona, a beautiful and fiercely loyal young Venetian woman and Othello, an ageing Moroccan mercenary. Unfortunately for the happy couple, erstwhile friend Iago harbours an irrational hatred and jealousy of the noble and brave Othello. Determined to destroy both Othello’s relationship with Desdemona and indeed his very life, Iago begins a subtle campaign of vilification, which inevitably and inexorably leads to tragedy.

Nunn’s version, set on Cyprus during the nineteenth century, brilliantly uses light, costumes and cinematography to underline the play’s themes of innocence, infidelity, ownership, manipulation and sexual jealousy. The result is a truly unforgettable production.

Review

" … as near to perfect a piece of television drama as you can get" -- The Times

"Ian McKellen gives a mesmerizing performance" -- The Daily Telegraph

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on 15 Mar. 2004
Format: DVD
Excellent cast and performance. The characters are brought to life and the complex relationships between them are well developed. Ian McKellan does an electrifying Iago. Imogen Stubbs brings depth to a very difficult character - Desdimona can be too shallow, but Stubbs gives the character life and vitality to make her real.
The down side is that it looks like a taping of the theater performance. The power that good camera work and sets can bring is lost here. But this is easily made up by the cast.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Othello (1990) [DVD]
Ian McKellen (Actor), Imogen Stubbs (Actor), Trevor Nunn (Director) | Rated: Universal,

Even if you don't do Shakespeare - and I hated it at school and for the next forty years - you should see this fabulous film. Wonderful perfrormances, great direction (Sir Trevor Nunn, best Shakespeare director ever). So don't be put off by the author's name, nothing high-brow about this, just an utterly absorbing battle between good and evil - not telling you which wins !

Well done jonsbargainbasement - a new seller to me. Delivered well within promised time and in the promised good condition. This is a long-wanted region2 copy with features, going to be treasured.
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Dark and pokey production. It's a real shame but I persisted as I would watch a cast like this advertising toilet paper all day. I suppose we have all been spoiled by digital images and sound with wonderful settings, like Branagh's 'Hamlet.'

Something else too: there are no subtitles. These really help.
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Format: DVD
It's one of those accepted blips: any production of "Othello" doesn't rely on the performance of the eponymous hero, but of his Nemesis, Iago.
And what an Iago Ian McKellen makes! Absolutely astounding. You have to see it.
Willard White is serviceable as Othello, Zoe Wanamaker is her usual superb self as Emilia and Imogen Stubbs is surprisingly unpunchable in a role that really could only be played properly by a 23 year old Jeanne Moreau.
Great production that (voguishly, but brilliantly) takes the play down to its domestic roots and plays as a chamber piece.
There are always going to be limitations to film versions of theatre, but by accepting that this is what this "Othello" is, Trevor Nunn has come up with a production to treasure.
If you want a real treat, buy his "Macbeth" (also with McKellen, matched by a towering Judi Dench) at the same time. If anything, it's even better.
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Format: DVD
Fantastic...amazing...marvellous
Really entertaining (and yet strangely educational) adaptation that certainly helped me to fully understand the play and ensured a good grade at A Level English.
Superior to every other Shakespeare adaptation by a country mile, Ian McKellen puts in an unbelievable performance as the Machiavellian Iago that puts most other actors to shame
Everything about the production is class and although the idea of watching a Shakepeare play is not appealing to all, this could be enjoyed by anyone
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Format: DVD
I wasn't sure which of the many versions on offer I should buy and pondered long and hard (we wanted it to help our daughter with her GCSE)before I decided on this version - and I don't think I could have chosen better. The cast is superb but Ian Mckellern is outstanding as Iago, his asides to the camera are wonderfully conspiratorial. It has a 'stagey' feel which I loved. Equally the transference of the play to the 19th Century worked really well. I can recommend this version unreservedly - it is the full play (Three and a half hours almost)and even has an 'interval'! Bravo to all involved in this production.
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Format: VHS Tape
I studied this play for "A" level English many moons ago, so it was with anticipation that I bought this video.
The casting of Willard White and Ian McKellen is inspired. The performances are faultless as you watch the systematic destruction and disintegration of Othello by his trusted second-in-command.
It is a play that tears you to pieces, and therefore cannot be watched often; in the hands of this cast, under the direction of Trevor Nunn, it is utterly gripping.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
this was purchased for my daughter who is sitting her higher english exam this year,she found the words used in the novel were difficult to understand,finding a DVD was extremelly hard,so purchased this item.It has helped my daughter so much and i would recommend for anyone in a similar position to purchase it!
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