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King Lear (1971)

The Shakespeare tragedy that gave us the expression "How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child." King Lear has not one but two ungrateful children, and it's ... See full summary »

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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Irene Worth ...
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Susan Engel ...
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Tom Fleming ...
Anne-Lise Gabold ...
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Robert Langdon Lloyd ...
Edgar (as Robert Lloyd)
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Alan Webb ...
Søren Elung Jensen ...
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Storyline

The Shakespeare tragedy that gave us the expression "How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child." King Lear has not one but two ungrateful children, and it's especially galling because he turned over his entire kingdom to them. Paul Scofield is an ancient, imposing shell of a Lear tormented by his too-long life as well as by daughters he calls "unnatural hags." At one point, the king looks his eldest daughter, Goneril (Ireme Worth), straight in the eye and declares, "Thou art a boil, a plague-sore, of embossed carbuncle in my corrupted blood." These are the troubles not even the best-trained family counselor could ever hope to resolve. Written by alfiehitchie

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Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

4 February 1971 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Kong Lear  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The song sung by the fool at the end of Act III, Scene 2 is not present in Shakespeare's script. This song can be found sung by the fool in "Twelfth Night" in the closing scene of Shakespeare's script for the play. See more »

Crazy Credits

Not only is there no music in the film, but there are no "ambient sounds" at all during the opening credits, giving the impression that they were filmed using no soundtrack whatsoever. See more »

Connections

Version of The Tragedy of King Lear Part 1/II (1948) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Wow
26 May 2005 | by (England) – See all my reviews

The above reviewer certainly completely missed the point of this production. Perhaps he needs to do some research into King Lear before he berates this particular interpretation. Certainly it's challenging to watch, but that was entirely Brook's intention. He's taken King Lear and emphasised the absurdist elements of the play to draw out its nihilism. It's supposed to be bleak/non-sensical in some parts/incoherent/challenging for an audience to watch. I suggest you understand it before you berate it. If it just didn't tickle your fancy then that's fine. In the post-modern tradition Brook removes and alters significant chunks of the original Shakespeare text. The film is chaotically edited, reinforcing the theme of Order to Chaos within the play. Brook's interpretation is definitely challenging to watch. Absurdist theatre is intended to be confronting for a viewer. It is totally bleak, but keep an open mind as you watch it.


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