12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
The great classical version and a very watchable film,
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This review is from: Richard III (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
Stylistic, quite lavish, fantastically directed and photographed, this is a very charismatic version of the great Shakespeare tragedy that not everyone likes because of its so called politicisation of history. Well, if that is the case, then even that holds some historical value now, as it was done even before the young writer picked up the story. And this very traditional version is the one given by the great Olivier here, having a wail of a time hamming it up as evil Richard Crookback, machiavelian usurper of the English crown. It's wonderful, it's great to look at while being a treat for the ears as well, as one of the great theatrical orators rolls out those perfect decasyllables in that loud declamatory voice of his, while his eyes roll about just as much as his tongue, and his arms occasionally flap up and down. This is one of my two favourite Shakespeare movies, it beats both Olivier's Hamlet and Henry V for me, for being so well contained and narrated. The text of course is second only to Hamlet in the whole of the Shakespeare canon, so what we get is line after line of powerful stuff.
Now is the winter of my discontent
Made glorious summer by this DVD.