Macbeth - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Macbeth Reviews

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August 16, 2016
Definitely surpassed my expectations.
½ July 8, 2016
Darkness, madness, violence, triumph of evil. Typical compelling Polanski in other words. 9/10
½ July 8, 2016
Darkness, madness, violence, triumph of evil. Typical compelling Polanski in other words. 9/10
June 7, 2016
Not really my thingy.
May 31, 2016
For kids today I think it's important for them to read literature and more importantly I think the should be able to understand what there reading. I believe if it was in our language and their language it would be easier for us to understand it. I feel like more kids would love to read it if it was in easier learning to know what is happening because we focus more on how to pronounce the words than actually knowing what's happening what's going on within the play. If they come out with a newer version of the play like they did for Shakespeare Romeo and Juliet more students around my age would be interested in watching it and comparing it to the play. Students like to compare movies and books to their lives and seeing how relatable it is to their life. More students need to give the play a chance and they probably won't and continue to label it "boring" and maybe even "dumb" because they aren't sure what's happening in the play. It's easier for them to label it like that than to actually give it a chance. I hope in the future they come out with a newer version of Macbeth so more people want to read it and they will finally get to realize the true beauty of Macbeth. They will will finally come to realize what they've been missing out on.Until that happens I will have to rate Macbeth 3 out of 5 stars. Because it's hard to understand the play. In fact take Act 1 Scene 1 for example: When the hurlyburly'sdone;
I come, Graymalkin.
Paddock calls. Anon!
Most students wouldn't know what that even meant! But if it was in English saying Graymalkin and Paddock are the names of "familiars," spirits who are companions and servants to the witches. Graymalkin is a familiar who takes the shape of a cat; Paddock takes the shape of a toad.
"Anon" means "soon" or "right away." The witch is calling out to her familiar, saying, in effect, "I'm coming, I'll be right with you." It would be much more easier to comprehend.
½ April 27, 2016
"Fair is foul, and foul is fair". Blood running in streams down from the fortress of Scotland, the river is filled with hunger of thy self. Polanski touched a nerve in the brain of Shakespear, a vision of pureness.
February 27, 2016
A masterpiece! Maybe the best Shakespeare film ever made. It's better than Justin Kurzel's new version in almost every way. Jon Finch and F. Annis in their best roles ever and Polanski at the peak of his powers. Why is it so good ? Because it's so well told and true to Shakespeare without following the play too closely. Some things are even better than in the play. This is the gold standard for every new version.
October 16, 2015
I just remembered that I watched this movie very briefly in high school. It looks absolutely beautiful. Perhaps the best cinematic version of Macbeth ever made.
½ September 5, 2015
one of the best made films of its genre....great costume and set design...
July 27, 2015
My personal favorite of all Shakespeare's plays -- Polanski conjures up a witches' brew of Olivier-like internal monologues, unflinchingly honest gore and a landscape as barren as the morality of its protagonist. Superb.
July 24, 2015
Produzido em grande escala, esse filme - quase que com o texto integral de Shakespeare - de Polanski se beneficia também pelo bom elenco.
May 16, 2015
1971 is a year director Roman Polanski will never forget. For it is that year, in which he made this definitive version of William Shakespeare's Macbeth. 1971 is also the year in which the infamous murderer and cult leader Charles Manson got a life sentence in a California prison for the grisly murders of Polanski's pregnant wife Sharon Tate and several family friends in 1969. It is hard not to imagine that this intense personal tragedy did not influence Polanski's craft. The timing of the film speaks unspoken volumes. The film is brutal, harsh and unrelenting. According to Shakespeare, the characters are full of sound and fury, but signify nothing and that is exactly how Polanski films Macbeth. Polanski's adaptation of Macbeth is most likely the closest to The Bard's original intention of the play. A tale of lust and revenge where prophecies and lies mix with shallowness and false bravado. Hallucinations and ghosts are commonplace, while honor and courage are in short supply. This is the medieval world of Macbeth, Macduff, Duncan, Malcolm, Banquo, the three witches, and Lady Macbeth. Daggers are in the character's minds, meanwhile the audience's eyes feast upon stunning cinematography, their ears fill with Shakespeare's dialogue, and feelings of relief come over the viewer that such a world existed only in the past. In addition, a feeling of despair and sorrow arises once the viewer makes the connection that such brutality also touched the life of the director. Any student of Shakespeare, Roman Polanski follower, or film buff in general should take time out to view this film.
½ April 26, 2015
Macbeth is one of the least potent tragedies of Shakespeare and it so happens to one of his overrated works as well. There is no real tragedy as the drama has a continuous even downpour from the very beginning and it's hard to feel sympathy to the titular character. Macbeth lacks the real emotions that made Julius Caesar and Shakespeare's greatest tragedy Hamlet what they are.

Polanski's Macbeth is uneven, but it stays true to the source material. It's performances are mostly unsatisfactory and the ending evokes more laughter than tears or sorrow. However, Polanski is able in creating a rich atmosphere, mood and feel of the dark time.
½ February 14, 2015
I might appreciate this more if I saw it today but when I watched it in school my sophomore year, it traumatized me. I vaguely remember those witches, but mostly I remember Macbeth's severed head being bounced around on a stick while he still had blurred vision. Creepy!
½ February 10, 2015
The Polanski adaptation of the famous Shakespeare tragedy Macbeth is among the best. As always Polanski implies many things in the film without saying them outright, which he is a master of. Since this film came out in 1971, just 2 years after the murder of his wife, many say that this movie is more gory than some of his other movies; it is things like these that make him such a genius director. And the twist end deviating from the original play is in itself very satisfying.
½ January 28, 2015
"Life's but a walking shadow. A poor player struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more. It is a tale told by an idiot.. full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."
½ January 15, 2015
Excellent adaptation. One of the most faithful movies based on Shakespeare. Pretty dark, this was the first movie Polanski made, after the Manson family killed his lady, and you can tell... You can see the pain onscreen.
January 2, 2015
Review In A Nutshell:

My first experience of Roman Polanski's Macbeth was not a very pleasant one; the dialogue was difficult to understand and because of that it was difficult to connect with the film's characters. A second viewing has allowed me to appreciate the film much better, as this time I was able to comprehend most of the film's phrases and words, allowing my experience to be smoother and immersive.

Macbeth covers the story of man who has been informed of his destiny from three witches, stating that he would become the ruler of Scotland. After learning this, he informs his wife of this and she becomes enticed with the idea, and finds herself obsessed and determined in letting this prophecy become a reality. It is a fascinating character study of someone being able to see into their own future and how this knowledge could eventually consume them. It makes me reflect on my own self, thinking whether it would change me as a person if I had the ability to predict the future; will my greed and jealousy shape me into a different and ill man? Humanity is obsessed with finding answers in order to gain a sense of security; little do they know that having this intelligence could actually be the cause of your doom.

I have always felt that Roman Polanski is at his best when he is handling material that is contemporary rather than period, as his contemporary characters feel more complex; I truly felt that the protagonist in The Pianist to be simplistic, lacking of fine detail. Here in Macbeth, he has proven me wrong as the titular character is such a tortured soul, anchored with intense psychological fractures caused from their betrayal and sin, making him such an interesting character to follow; the same goes for Lady Macbeth, who suffers the same issues as her husband.

Polanski has taken the theatrical trademark of the material, and placed it in a cinematic form; capturing it with a surrealistic tone and style, letting the internal torment be visible for the audience to see; letting the actors be free from having to plainly convey it in their performance. It is Polanski and his director of photography's (Gilbert Taylor) use of the camera that lets this classic tale not become a stage translation but instead a cinematic re-imagination, whilst maintaining the integrity of the source material. The sets in this film is accurate but also lavish, and his camera captures and moves through the set with such grace that we forget that it is easy to get lost into the period.

Macbeth proves why Polanski is one of the greatest directors of the 20th century. He is able to take an over-adapted material and brings something fresh and exciting with it.
½ November 7, 2014
Polanski's dark, ominous, moody, atmospheric, grandiose, grotesque, and graphically violent adaptation of "Macbeth" is EXACTLY how Shakespearean tragedies are meant to be translated into cinema.
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