Monday, August 8, 2016

Chimes at Midnight

Chimes at Midnight. Dir. Orson Welles. Perf. Orson Welles, Jeanne Moreau, John Gielgud, and Margaret Rutherford. 1967. Blu-ray. Criterion Collection, 2016

This post is mainly to anticipate the Criterion Blu-ray release of Chimes at Midnight. It will come out at the end of this month.

The film richly deserves the full Criterion treatment. Indeed, I think this is the film that will push me into buying a Blu-ray player.

What I have for you is not from the delicately remastered print to come; it's from an old videocassette that I happened across in a book sale somewhere. Watch it so that you can rejoice that the good people of Criterion have made it better.

The film combines elements from 1 and 2 Henry IV into an amazingly insightful set of character studies and deep reading.

The clip I've excerpted is from the scene in Eastcheap where first Falstaff and then Hal imaginatively enact an exchange between Hal and his father the king.


That should give you a sense of how great this film can be. And now . . . prepare yourselves for the power of the Criterion edition.

Note: Here's a new version of the image that begins this post. Observe the Blu-Ray difference!

Links: The Film at IMDB.

Click below to purchase the film from
(and to support Bardfilm as you do so).

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Bardfilm is normally written as one word, though it can also be found under a search for "Bard Film Blog." Bardfilm is a Shakespeare blog (admittedly, one of many Shakespeare blogs), and it is dedicated to commentary on films (Shakespeare movies, The Shakespeare Movie, Shakespeare on television, Shakespeare at the cinema), plays, and other matter related to Shakespeare (allusions to Shakespeare in pop culture, quotes from Shakespeare in popular culture, quotations that come from Shakespeare, et cetera).

Unless otherwise indicated, quotations from Shakespeare's works are from the following edition:
Shakespeare, William. The Riverside Shakespeare. 2nd ed. Gen. ed. G. Blakemore Evans. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1997.
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