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Hamlet (1996)

PG-13  |   |  Drama  |  25 December 1996 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 28,544 users  
Reviews: 220 user | 83 critic

Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, returns home to find his father murdered and his mother remarrying the murderer, his uncle. Meanwhile, war is brewing.

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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Riz Abbasi ...
Attendant to Claudius
...
David Blair ...
Attendant to Claudius
...
...
...
Michael Bryant ...
Peter Bygott ...
Attendant to Claudius
...
...
Charles Daish ...
Stage Manager
...
...
Reece Dinsdale ...
...
Edit

Storyline

Hamlet, son of the king of Denmark, is summoned home for his father's funeral and his mother's wedding to his uncle. In a supernatural episode, he discovers that his uncle, whom he hates anyway, murdered his father. In an incredibly convoluted plot--the most complicated and most interesting in all literature--he manages to (impossible to put this in exact order) feign (or perhaps not to feign) madness, murder the "prime minister," love and then unlove an innocent whom he drives to madness, plot and then unplot against the uncle, direct a play within a play, successfully conspire against the lives of two well-meaning friends, and finally take his revenge on the uncle, but only at the cost of almost every life on stage, including his own and his mother's. Written by John Brosseau <brossj5683@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violent images and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

25 December 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

William Shakespeare's Hamlet  »

Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

ITL 95,996,000 (Italy) (16 May 1997)

Gross:

ITL 1,526,158,000 (Italy) (6 June 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Hugh Crumwell was the then-principal of the RADA in which Kenneth Branagh studied. Crumwell was on the set all the time; he came as a request by Branagh to give an objective critique for the performance of each take. See more »

Goofs

After Hamlet speaks with his father in his woods, while he runs and is met by Marcellus and Horatio, there is a quick pan shot in the woods where you see a ladder covered by a long board on the ground. See more »

Quotes

Hamlet: Whose grave is this sir?
First Gravedigger: Mine sir.
[Resumes singing his ditty]
Hamlet: [Interrupts] I think it be thine indeed, for thou liest in't.
First Gravedigger: You lie out on't sir, and therefore it is not yours. For my part I do not lie ins't and yet it is mine.
Hamlet: Thou dost lie in't to be in't, and say 'tis thine. 'Tis for the dead not for the quick, therefore thou liest.
First Gravedigger: 'Tis a quick lie, sir. 'Twill away again from me to you.
See more »


Soundtracks

In Youth When I Did Love
(uncredited)
Written by William Shakespeare
Performed by Billy Crystal
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Brilliant version
5 February 2005 | by See all my reviews

I must say that, looking at Hamlet from the perspective of a student, Brannagh's version of Hamlet is by far the best. His dedication to stay true to the original text should be applauded. It helps the play come to life on screen, and makes it easier for people holding the text while watching, as we did while studying it, to follow and analyze the text.

One of the things I have heard criticized many times is the casting of major Hollywood names in the play. I find that this helps viewers recognize the characters easier, as opposed to having actors that all look and sound the same that aid in the confusion normally associated with Shakespeare.

Also, his flashbacks help to clear up many ambiguities in the text. Such as how far the relationship between Hamlet and Ophelia really went and why Fortinbras just happened to be at the castle at the end. All in all, not only does this version contain some brilliant performances by actors both familiar and not familiar with Shakespeare. It is presented in a way that one does not have to be an English Literature Ph.D to understand and enjoy it.


70 of 83 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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