16 June 2008 | rwint1611
One of the Best Versions of a Shakespeare Play That I Have Seen
THE PLOT: Through ambition, greed, and the spurring of his wife a man rises to the ranks of King, but leaves murder, destruction, guilt, and a wide array of enemies in his wake.
THE POSITIVE: This is visually stunning from beginning to end. The photography of the Scottish landscape seems almost surreal. Although some may argue that the violence is excessive it is still well done and works in a nice lyrical fashion with the script. The gory special effects are very realistic and top anything that I have seen in any slasher movie especially the decapitation scene. The witches also come off as looking very frightening here. The scene in their coven where you see dozens of fully nude elderly women is grotesquely brilliant. This is one Shakespeare rendition that doesn't have any of the stiff staginess. The characters seem to be having real conversations and their lines are spoken in a much more natural way. Finch is absolutely perfect in the lead. The facial expressions that he show during Macbeth's different phases are fascinating and right on target. This would be a good version to show to teenagers and others who might not ordinarily be into Shakespeare. The action is well mounted and paced so anyone would be able to follow it even if they are not able to completely grasp the language.
THE NEGATIVE: Outside of a relentlessly bleak visual style that may be too much for some there really isn't anything negative about it.
THE LOWDOWN: This is the best film adaptation to Shakespeare's work that I have seen. It is exciting, graphic, realistic, visual, and captivating all at the same time even for those that may not be into Shakespeare.
THE RATING: 8 out of 10.