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A classic story adapted by a filmmaker near his creative peak, Chimes at Midnight unites Welles and Shakespeare - and powerfully distills the best of both. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

Henry IV (John Gielgud) usurps the English throne, sets in motion the factious War of the Roses and now faces a rebellion led by Northumberland scion Hotspur (Norman Rodway). Henry's heir, Prince Hal (Keith Baxter), is a ne'er-do-well carouser who drinks and causes mischief with his low-class friends, especially his rotund father figure, John Falstaff (Orson Welles). To redeem his title, Hal may have to choose between allegiance to his real father and loyalty to his friend.

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Critic Reviews for Chimes at Midnight

All Critics (50) | Top Critics (19) | Fresh (49) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for Chimes at Midnight

  • Jan 02, 2017
    Welles is obviously a great Falstaff but not in the ways you'd expect. His bold performance consistently defies conventional takes on the character.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Jun 10, 2015
    Perhaps I was not in the mood to take in one of Shakespeare's lesser regarded works but I completely did not enjoy this Welles' masterpiece.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Feb 12, 2011
    Visually stupendous exercise from Orson Welles that should be at the front line of Great Movies next to his other masterpieces. I'm not a huge Shakespeare fan, and I found this laugh out loud hilarious at some times and emotionally resonate at others. 100/100 More at: http://thegreatestreview.blogspot.com/2011/02/obscure-cinematic-gem.html
    Simeon D Super Reviewer
  • Dec 23, 2008
    Complaints about low-quality dubbing seem unfair in the face of such stunning images and inspired direction. Orson Welles' vision is strange, powerful and inspiring. He always finds surprising ways to shoot and cut his films, and just looking at them is thrilling enough for me. The performances are uniformly strong as well.
    Mike T Super Reviewer

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