Julius Caesar

Julius Caesar

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An adaptation of the classic Shakespeare play, chronicling the events around the assassination of Julius Caesar.

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b
bpbiblio
Feb 20, 2018

Yet another masterpiece of historical drama from the man who would be known as “Shakespeare.” Even though the play and film are entitled Julius Caesar, this story is really about Brutus, expertly played here by James Mason. It is his story: from the first scene when he decides to join the assassins in murdering Caesar to the last scene when his dead body is laid out in the tent as a result of that decision. Even though the young Marlon Brando gives an unexpected tour de force performance as the impassioned Marc Antony, it is Mason’s quiet dignity in portraying Brutus that looms large throughout the film. He of all the assassins, turns out to be the most honorable, valuing honesty and conviction above greed and ambition. Marc Antony says it all in the final scene when he declares that whereas the others who killed Caesar did it primarily out of envy, Brutus did it because he truly believed it would be for the betterment of Rome.

n
Nursebob
Nov 19, 2017

A cast of big name stars from both sides of the pond turn Shakespeare’s tale of jealousy and ambition in ancient Rome into a Hollywood epic. With several military victories under his belt, Julius Caesar (Louis Calhern) is basking in the adoration of his people. But a small clique of senators find his increasing popularity a threat to both themselves and to the Republic itself. Led by Cassius and Brutus (John Gielgud, James Mason) they plot Casesar’s death—but one person stands in the way of their bloody plans, Caesar’s right-hand man Mark Antony (Marlon Brando method acting his heart out). Eschewing Technicolor extravagance for the gritty realism of B&W, director Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s soundstage production is an effective mix of plywood props (borrowed from the set of "Quo Vadis") and painted backdrops with wind machines, lightning effects, and a thousand toga-wearing extras. Everyone delivers their lines with classical flourish despite mismatched accents which range from Gielgud’s clipped British staccato to Brando’s lisping mumble, and a seasoned supporting cast round out the story especially Greer Garson as Caesar’s concerned wife Calpurnia, and Edmond O’Brien as fellow conspirator Casca.

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patch666
May 02, 2017

Absolutely brilliant acting!!!! Brando is ASTONISHING. Charismatic he is a true legend and one of his greatest roles ever. The dialogue by Shakespeare is not bad either 420

1
1aa
Jan 13, 2015

A great film version of the play. There is an error in the transcription for the subtitles: they write "prescription" when the word "proscription" is uttered.

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Sir John Gielgud was brilliant as Cassius; the man had chops. Stella(r) performance from Marlon, also. And James Mason was no slouch, either. I think Mankiewicz should've tried to get MGM to spring for Technicolor on this one, though. I feel it would've breathed a little more vibrancy into it (and I'm a huge b&w fan).

gmaulucci Jul 28, 2012

A must see just for Marlon Brando's performance. Nice restoration with crystal clear black and white.

s
swyckl
Jul 11, 2012

I enjoyed this very much. Good history. Well presented.

c
cag1029
Jan 09, 2012

Excellent

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m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Julius Caesar: "Cowards die many times before their deaths... The valiant never taste of death but once."

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Cassius: "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves that we are underlings."

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Julius Caesar: "Et tu, Brute? Then fall, Caesar!"

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Marc Antony: "Friends... Romans... countrymen... lend me your ears... I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him. The evil that men do lives after them... The good is oft interred with their bones... So let it be with Caesar."

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