Sight and Sound - 02/01/1996
"...Parker clearly has a strong sense of the play....Fishburne, too, is impressive..."
Variety - 12/11/1995
"...Colorful and intimate....Well performed by its two male leads....Fishburne cuts a brooding, powerful figure..."
Los Angeles Times - 12/14/1995
"...Sleek, refreshingly unpretentious....Fishburne has everything it takes to make Shakespeare's tragic hero work..."
The celebrated Moor of Venice and his young bride Desdemona fall prey to the evil machinations of the once-faithful Iago in this vivid, often violent retelling of Shakespeare's tragedy.
An intense adaptation of Shakespeare's classic tragedy about the Moorish general who "loved not wisely, but too well" -- and so is duped by his evil aide into thinking that his wife has been unfaithful. As war between Venetians and the Turks rages in the 16th century, Othello weds the beautiful Desdemona and promotes Cassio over his longtime assistant, Iago. Othello prepares to celebrate his marriage, but Iago -- furious over Othello's snub -- has dastardly plans in store for his employer. Iago begins to poison Othello's mind against Desdemona, claiming that she's having an affair with Cassio; he even manages to produce "proof" of the infidelity. It doesn't take long for the jealous general to start believing Iago's allegations, and he winds up on the path of destruction.
Character Study |
Stage Play |
Theatrical Release |
Released theatrically in New York City December 14, 1995. The film grossed $2.7 million domestically.
Original soundtrack available on Varese Sarabande compact discs and cassettes.
A co-production of Dakota Films and Imminent Films.
Color by Technicolor.
Film debut for director Oliver Parker, a British actor who has often collaborated with Clive Barker, and has played Iago and Roderigo in stage productions of "Othello."
Additional credits: Gianluca Leurini (production manager); Richard Styles, Sara Desmond, Joyce Branagh, Francesca Castellano (assistant directors); Marco Pieroni (steadicam operator); Tina Earnshaw (chief make-up); Dominic Lester (sound re-recording mixer); Nick Hall (fight arranger).
Filmed on location, primarily at a 15th-century castle near Rome.
Rated BBFC 12 by the British Board of Film Classification.
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