• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Four versions of Macbeth; Orson Wells- 1948, Roman Polanski- 1971, BBC Macbeth- 1980's, and Macbeth on the Estate- 1997

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Macbeth Media Assignment I have watched the opening scenes of four productions of the Shakespeare play 'Macbeth'. The four versions are as follows: 1. Orson Wells- 1948 (an attempt to film in 21 days with paper-Mache sets) 2. Roman Polanski- 1971 3. BBC Macbeth- 1980's 4. Macbeth on the Estate- 1997 "Performance" I am going to review scenes, visual effects and casting of the characters Macbeth, Lady Macbeth and Duncan. I will also comment on which version is the most enjoyable, the most relevant and finally the most intriguing. I will review and comment on only three of the versions, versions 1, 2 and version 4. I will do each version one by one, but will compare them at certain points. Orson Wells The Orson Wells version was filmed in 21 days in 1948. It was filmed for screening in the cinema. This explains the general lack of concern for detail, the paper-Mache sets and the un-professionalism of the actors speeches and delivery. People can easily switch off a television but to walk out of a cinema is harder to do after you have paid for it. The film is in black and white which at the time wasn't a problem but nowadays is not as exciting. Also big parts of the text are missed out in this version, probably because of the 21 day deadline. ...read more.

Middle

I have chosen these for this as they, in my opinion are the two more relevant and accurate versions of the play. Roman Polanski version (1971) of the play doesn't change too much as it is for a cinema audience, and the people viewing it would have payed and would have been expecting a more conventional, unchanged 'Macbeth' because they made a deliberate choice to view it. On the other hand people watching 'Macbeth on the Estate' may not have wanted, or intended to see a Shakespeare film and may not normally opt to watch Shakespeare. Both versions are made with this in mind, and adapt the play accordingly. The Polanski version opens with a long establishing shot, giving the viewer an idea of the settings. It is set on a beach, which is deserted and lifeless. The soundtrack plays a distorted string instrument with a regular piano note as an accompaniment, making for a very unusual effect, as it is played alongside a speeded up sequence of the beach using time lapse photography. A single seagull flying across the sky signifies the change back into realtime, it sqawks as the nondiagetic sound fades. Traditionally the cry of seagulls have been associated with the cry of lost souls and this has probably been chosen for that reason. ...read more.

Conclusion

guard down so that they are receptive to Shakespeare." MacDuff's soliloquy is made up of original text, but isn't actually directly from the text. He says it although the events had already took place and it is made to seem like a flashback, and the sequence is shot as an extreme closeup on his face. The closeups in the Polanski version aren't as long, and this makes for a different effect and it focuses more on their expressions rather than speech. This is because images can often take the place of words, and be just as effective, if not more so. The two versions are very different mainly because of the media that they have been designed for and also because of the time at which the films were made. 'Macbeth on the Estate' raises issues about bringing Shakespeare to different audiences. Some people would say that Shakespeare should be left untouched. Others welcome the changes, as does actor Sir Ian McKellen "If an audience enjoys it, it will be Shakespeare that they are enjoying." Changes to the text are done with varying success. I think 'Macbeth on the Estate' would have been better if the language would have been updated, as the Shakesperian language doesn't seem to fit with the modern characters. The Polanski version is a more typical approach to adaptation, and is well edited and presented for a film of its period. ?? ?? ?? ?? Adam Kennedy ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Macbeth section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Macbeth essays

  1. Compare and contrast two different film versions, of Shakespeare's Macbeth.

    Clothing would be as it was in that era. I would use tunics, robes, and other fine clothes of that time. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth would have a crown, jewellery and rich clothing to emphasise the role, and importance. All the guests would also be dressed in rich costumes because they are highly ranked and respected people of Scotland of that time.

  2. A comparison of the Dagger scene, Act 2, Scene 1, from 'Macbeth' as presented ...

    Banquo insists to Macbeth that he wants to maintain his integrity, telling Macbeth that he cannot be bought. This does not really please Macbeth, and he quickly tells Banquo to go to bed and sleep.

  1. Task: Compare and contrast the repersentation of women in "Macbeth" and the two film ...

    As I said earlier witches were believed to have worked for the Devil and the King was Gods representative on Earth. The witches had turned Macbeth against the King, so this would mean that Macbeth was working for the Devil and plotting against the King/God.

  2. Comparing two film versions of Macbeth, Roman Polanski's 1972 film and Michael Bogdanov's 1998 ...

    The next view is of the banqueting hall itself, huge and draughty set out with a 'High Table' and a long table facing outwards from it. Macbeth says that he will 'mix with society' and sit on the long table instead of isolating himself at the High Table, where Francesca Annis presides as a beautiful, young Lady Macbeth.

  1. Comparison between Roman Polanski’s Macbeth and Macbeth on the Estate

    Once the king is dead she plays less of a role in Macbeth's life except for when she digs him out of a series of holes when he has visions of killing the king and Banquo. He has these visions and when all else fails she comes along and takes

  2. Macbeth - discuss the first four scenes.

    I think the witches are evil, as in act 1, scene 3, on the second line, it says that they have been "killing swine." This implies they kill for fun. It also sounds as if she was boasting to her companions as if it was a competition.

  1. I will be looking at and comparing two different film interpretations of act 3 ...

    There is much more of a formal atmosphere and closed environment. The director does this to make the audience think that Macbeth is trying to impress important people at the banquet to secure his position on the throne. The agenda for the banquet is very focused.

  2. In both the Royal Shakespeare Company and Macbeth on the Estate versions of act ...

    I keep a servant fee'd" He is admitting to having a servant of every noble in Scotland spying on their boss. Now Macbeths' evil and deceit are spreading all over Scotland. Shakespeare is also showing Macbeths' progressing evil a lot in this scene.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work