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Critic Reviews for Julius Caesar
Over Caesar's corpse Brando begins to mix grief, rage, cunning, and ferocity; his reading of the funeral oration is so quakingly angry you understand why it would rouse the rabble.January 18, 2016 | Full Review…
The best Shakespeare that Hollywood has yet produced.
A tense, melodramatic story, clearly presented, and excellently acted by one of the finest casts assembled for a film.
Unimaginative but intelligent.
A remarkably successful stab at Shakespeare.June 24, 2006 | Full Review…
A stirring and memorable film.May 20, 2003 | Full Review…
Audience Reviews for Julius Caesar
Oct 14, 2017In this movie, you have the world's greatest playwright (Shakespeare) combined with one of the world's greatest actors (Brando), two other fantastic talents (Mason and Gielgud), and a compelling historical tale (the assassination of Julius Caesar and resulting civil war). On paper, this should be an extraordinary film. And I have to say, the scenes with Brando right after the assassination are compelling (the one in private ending with him raging "Cry 'Havoc!'", and of course the address to the crowd), even if he slips on a word or two. Watch it primarily for those, because the rest of the film, while erudite and worth watching, just doesn't translate as well. I disliked Louis Calhern as Caesar as he didn't have the right bearing or presence. Director Mankiewicz is faithful, perhaps too faithful, to the original, though adapting the play may have been a damned if you do, damned if you don't type situation. Regardless, there are elements that shine with Shakespeare's beautiful words, and there are other elements that fall flat.Antonius B Super Reviewer
Nov 15, 2013This adaptation of Shakespeare is, like the play, more interested in the post Caesar world than the title character. Brando gives us the most realistic Antony speech that I have ever seen. Mason and Gielgud are tremendous as the villains.John B Super Reviewer
May 18, 2013The best treatment of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, by far. Hats off to Ms. Kerr for her riveting portrayal. John's Gielgud's "Et Tu Brute?!" was the finest of the many versions out there.Christian C Super Reviewer
Nov 23, 2011Although the title is Julius Caesar, the play and the film are more concerned with Brutus and his interplay with Cassius and Antony. As Brutus, James Mason displays the brooding intelligence of a man clearly swimming in political waters far deeper than he is qualified for, either by training or temperament. Likewise Gielgud, as Cassius, is appropriately manipulative. Cassius has his own agenda and is happy to use Brutus to reach that end. In a similar manner, Director Joseph L. Mankiewicz has filled the other roles with excellent actors who are uniformly comfortable with Shakespeare's language to the point that they can use it as a means of investing their characters with a reality that is both honest and entertaining. As Marc Antony, Marlon Brando makes the most of his few but crucial appearances, including a stunningly intense delivery of the "I've come to bury Caesar" sequence at the turning point. Brando was an actor of immense talent and is not only comfortable with the language but more than holds his own with the classically trained actors in the cast who have far more experience with the Bard. Brando's timing and dramatic sense are impeccable. What's more, Brando infuses Antony with a pugnacious air that seems completely appropriate to Antony both dramatically and historically. Antony's speech alone, as played by Brando, is worth the price of admission. But most of this play belongs to the tortured, noble figure of Brutus. James Mason's fluid voice and minimalist acting style perfectly convey the humanity-and the tragedy of humanity-represented by this figure. His interplay with Gielgud throughout the play, starting with Cassius's cunning manipulation of Brutus into the conspiracy to kill Caesar and concluding with their reconciliation as Cassius faces death, is an acting school led by veterans of both stage and celluloid. In the in the end it is Cassius who is most changed by Brutus and that because of this relationship he dies a better man than the schemer we met earlier. Indeed, if you are looking for acting at its finest you need look no further than the Mason - Brando speeches in the Forum.Cinema F Super Reviewer
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