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I could not miss a film about Shakespeare. Very gloomy, tough, dynamic, intriguing, unexpected and perfectly staged historical drama. A film whose virtues can not be described in any words. Boxxy software have big gallery of this kind cool movies
Outstanding, based on truth and fact. Anyone that does some research will be convinced the great writer's identity has been hidden.
A thoughtful film with a twist filled theory.
Director Roland Emmerich is more know for his big budget disaster movies, but he chooses nuance and mindfulness in Anonymous. It is certainly his greatest film and most well done piece. He recreates Shakespearean era England with care and attention to detail. With darkness and mud abundant, Emmerich's crew nails the period's costumes and makeup. His writer John Orloff forms appropriate language for the time and a fascinating story. If you can forgive Orloff's lack of evidence behind the theory that William Shakespeare did not write his own plays, Emmerich treats you to a thoroughly entertaining movie.
I found myself immensely enjoying the acting of this superb cast. Rhys Ifans delivers a subtle and emotional performance as The Earl of Oxford. Ifans emotes so carefully with each facial expression and delicately spoken word. You can tell Ifans truly tried to play The Earl as thoughtfully as possible. Anonymous is my favorite role of Ifans because of his nuanced approach.
Furthermore, Edward Hogg gives a masterful performance as Robert Cecil. He portrays the Cecil's vile and calculating nature with apparent ease. He makes for a convincing villain. His sullen looks hide the contempt behind his eyes. The audience is treated not only by one great Cecil, but two with the addition of David Thewlis as William Cecil. Thewlis also plays it cool with an inner rage and disgust for plays and words. He marks Cecil for the Puritanical schemer history knows the Cecils as now.
Additionally, Anonymous harbors a slew of interesting supporting roles. Vanessa Redgrave is fun as crazed and romantic Elizabeth I. Sebastian Armesto is quite sympathetic as poet and playwright Ben Jonson. I thoroughly enjoyed Trystan Gravelle as the great playwright and poet Christopher "Kit" Marlowe. Finally, Derek Jacobi is the perfect choice for Anonymous' narrator.
Herein lies the problem with Anonymous: Rafe Spall. Spall is funny as a comedic actor, but his portrayal of William Shakespeare is so idiotic and lecherous, Anonymous instantly feels more synthetic. I wish Spall would have played Shakespeare a bit more likable or complex. As is, Spall's performance is contrived to say the least. He is really overacting. I think he loses the audience that wants to believe in William Shakespeare the brilliant writer.
Also, the score from Austrian composers Harald Kloser and Thomas Wander is quite enchanting. It keeps you in the time period with a bit of romance and excitement.
In all, Anonymous is a great movie and my favorite from Roland Emmerich despite its contrived efforts to undermine Shakespeare's legacy. It tells an interesting story in a beautiful and captivating way. The acting is overall quite excellent and even moving at times. I would recommend Anonymous to anyone who can put aside their feelings about Shakespeare and enjoy a neat film for its own merits.
Whether or not you believe in the far-fetched theory Emmerich proposes, it is a very interesting film.
Anonymous ambitiously conveys the theory that Shakespeare did not write a single play. A theory that I am very much interested in, The Oxfordian Theory proposes that the Earl of Oxford actually wrote the plays and penned Shakespeare to them. Being raised in a Puritan household, poetry and art was frowned upon but the Earl yearned to keep writing plays. Honestly if you have time, research on this theory...it's absolutely fascinating and definitely makes you question the legitimacy of Shakespeare. On top of this though we have political conspiracies within the Elizabethan court, illicit romantic affairs and plenty of back stabbing nobleman. Very ambitious, both in scale and it's subject...but unfortunately just exceeds Roland Emmerich's grasp. His desire for cinematic grandeur merely takes away from the plot focus and becomes messy. There is just too much. What I did admire though, was the portrayal of how the utilisation of words and art can convey ideologies. As the Earl looks down from his balcony in the Globe Theatre, you can see the power he holds through his plays and how the audience are manipulated through certain character portrayals. After all, words are the most powerful tool one can have. The Globe Theatre scenes were actually some of my favourite moments, watching Mark Rylance performing famed plays such as Henry V, Richard III and Twelfth Night. Rhys Ifans was excellent casting as the Earl of Oxford, his calm demeanour held much authority and power. Vanessa Redgrave and David Thewlis were also noteworthy. I wasn't too keen on Rafe Spall's portrayal of Shakespeare but in order to convey this theory it kind of made sense to make him a rather slimy character. The script and narrative is where the film falters. Exposition followed by backstory followed by politics followed by more exposition...just, turn it down a notch! Focus on the intrigue of Shakespeare being a fraud, would've been a far tighter plot. Also the ending was too...anti-climatic? Having said that, this film is full of ambition and I find it be rather watchable. Not bad from Emmerich I must say.
4/5 Stars. Seen this once before, but still a great film. The critics and it seems a fair amount of the public whinged quite heavily over this. It is a film about the mystery of Shakespeare's lack of credibility as the greatest playwright of all-time, given his upbringing. The truth is, in the film, that the Earl of Oxford was the true author and wished to have his voice heard without causing himself to be executed. The plot thereafter is Shakespearean in itself, with intrigue, betrayal, envy, complex relationships, and so on. A number of the plays are briefly featured, and my soliloquy from Romeo & Juliet is therein, thankfully.
The director did a Tarantino and has some sequences out of chronological order, though not without at least giving you an on-screen text indication or obvious change in age. This seems to have bothered some people, who I assume are also frightened by anything resembling complexity. That aside, the ending is definitely not something you would see coming, which also proved a point of contention amongst the plebeians.
Overall, a great film and a fantastic watch if you combine it in sequence with "The Tudors" and the two Cate Blanchett "Elizabeth" movies. Fuck the haters.
Being an italian and, thus not having bene educated with the mitology of Shakespeare as an untouchable icon, I consider this film one of the best I have ever seen. A well written story catching my curiosity, a suggestive picture of those years, and well acted, by the entire cast.
In Emmerich's hands the "truth" about Shakespeare turns out to be boring.
the movie is very good and had a great cast but to watch the movie and enjoy it, you must have open-minded
What if William Shakespeare wasn't the author of William Shakespeare's plays? That is probably one of the original "conspiracy theories" of the modern world, and like most other conspiracy theories, it breaks down like this; interesting at first with some intriguing 'evidence' but with some more time to stop and really rationalize it falls apart pretty quickly.
However, this doesn't stop the film, Anonymous, from providing a fascinating, if not historically flawed, look at the idea. The film strongly plays up the secret and cut throat world of English politics and royal in fighting very well. It also manages to provide a lot of sympathy for its main character, who is torn between his true love, poetry and the theater, and his duties of being an Earl, a political figure not unlike a Duke or Count.
The framing device is also very clever setting the entire thing as a play within a play you and the fictional audience are watching. In a sense it's not trying to tell a "this is how it really happened" story, but an intentional look into speculative alternate history. With plenty of action, romance, and betrayals about, it would occur to me that any Game of Thrones fan would have a good time watching this one off story of political and artistic re-working England's royal heritage. There are no dragons in this of course, but with all the edits to history, I can only wonder why not?