- Rated: Not Rated
- Run Time: 59 minutes
- Video: Tinted
- Released: June 26, 2001
- Originally Released: 1912
- Label: Kino Video
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Packaging: Keep Case
- Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33
- Additional Release Material:
- Documentary: "Rediscovering Richard III"
- Interactive Features:
- Scene Access
- Interactive Menus
- Text/Photo Galleries:
- Additional Text: Essay by Shakespearean Film Historian Douglas Brode
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Los Angeles Times - 10/31/1996
"...A surprisingly engaging example of the well-filmed play....Warde comes across as a sturdy, crowd-pleasing trouper who plays Richard with great relish..."
Description by OLDIES.com:
An astounding rediscovery of the cinema, Richard III
is the earliest surviving American feature film, newly discovered and restored to its original brilliance through the American Film Institute, with a haunting orchestral score by composer Ennio Morricone.
Produced as a vehicle for Frederick Warde, a legendary stage actor of the 19th Century, Richard III was the most ambitious Shakespearian adaptation to date. The film not only attempts to honor the intricacies of the original play, it flavors the drama with spectacular crowd scenes and rich color tints. Richard III offers a fresh glimpse at a time when Shakespeare wasn't strictly the domain of scholars but was a source of popular entertainment, "when Americans didn't have to be spoon-fed a great dramatist but were united in their passion for one who gave them characters who mirrored their own complex humanity, not to mention sublime poetry, along with requisite doses of sex and violence." (Frank Rich, The New York Times)
The earliest surviving American feature length film, James Keane's RICHARD III was rediscovered in 1995 when film collector William Buffum donated his mint print of the film to the AFI. The AFI restored the film's fading tints and commissioned Ennio Morricone to compose a new score.
Frederick Warde stars as Richard, the hunchback brother of King Edward IV who aspires to take his brother's throne. To accomplish this, Richard uses the turmoil brought about by the War of the Roses to turn the king against their other brother, the Duke of Clarence, who is imprisoned for treason, then arranges for Clarence's murder. He then woos the Lady Anne, determined to wed her to increase his influence. When Edward finally dies, Richard plots the murders of the young heir apparent and his brother--his own nephews. His machinations accelerate and murder piles atop murder as Richard succeeds in taking the throne--and desperately tries to hold it.
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