Kozintsev’s obsession with the great writer led him, in his words, ‘not to adapt Shakespeare to the cinema but the cinema to Shakespeare.’ The result is a starkly powerful adaptation of one of literature’s greatest tragedies. Shot in black and white, the fierce Baltic landscapes and ornate costumes underscore the spectacle of grief, madness, and tragedy. Boris Pasternak’s acclaimed translation and a haunting soundtrack from Dmitri Shostakovitch add to one of the greatest film versions of Shakespeare in any language.
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