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What are your views on the characters of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth from your reading of the play?

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Introduction

What are your views on the characters of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth from your reading of the play? 'This dead butcher and his fiend like Queen.' Act 5 The opening scene of the Macbeth builds up the tension that is carried through out the rest of the play. Three witches enter and set the 'spooky' mood, although they are clearly not with Macbeth and don't appear to have any contact with him, they seem to know where he will be and agree to meet him once he has returned from battle. This shows they can see into the future. In the theatre the witches are portrayed as nurses in a hospital wing and actually kill a wounded soldier. This makes them scarier than you imagine because they are mixed among normal people but can easily take lives without anyone noticing what they really are. On the way back from the battle Macbeth and Banquo come across the weird sisters (witches), they tell Macbeth he will be Thane of Glamis and Cawdor and then he will become King 'All hail Macbeth that shalt be King hereafter!' Banquo demands to here about his own future and learns he shall not be King, but his descendants will be 'Thou shalt get Kings, though thou be none.' Duncan then turns around and declares his eldest son Malcolm the Prince of Cumberland. Macbeth knows Malcolm is in the way of him getting the crown. Macbeth writes to his wife, Lady Macbeth telling her everything. He explains about the witches predictions of how he shall become the Thane of Cawdor and one day become King, he tells her the Thane of Cawdor part has already happened. ...read more.

Middle

Macbeth is hosting a feast and requests Banquo to be there, Banquo and Fleance plan to go riding that afternoon and promise to be back in time for the feast. Macbeth knows Banquo suspects him of murdering Duncan and is worried he will tell. Macbeth becomes paranoid everyone is against him. He has planned for both Banquo and Fleance to be killed whilst out riding. By now the audience can tell Macbeth trusts nobody and destroys anyone he sees as a threat. At the feast the bloodied ghost of Banquo appears to Macbeth but no one else, Macbeth panics and shouts at the ghost. He almost gives away that he was the one to kill Duncan 'Thou canst not say I did it.' At this point Macbeth shows he still does have points of weakness and is not totally indestructible like he likes to think he is. It shows he is still human and Lady Macbeth still has to give him confidence and give him the push he needs. He decides to return to the witches, this shows he needs reassurance that he is invincible and he wants to know more about what is going to happen. Act four opens with Macbeth going to see the witches. They make Macbeth a potion which makes him hallucinate. He has three visions, they tell him to beware Macduff, no man born from woman can harm Macbeth, and that ha can't be beaten until Birnam Wood moves to Dunsinane Hill. After hearing these apparitions Macbeth becomes very confident, he has totally turned into an evil selfish power hungry fool. Macbeth isn't afraid of Macduff because everyone is born of a woman 'Who can impress the forest, bid the tree unfix his earthbound root?' ...read more.

Conclusion

Shakespeare wrote Macbeth as a play not as story to be in a book. This play is hard to follow and some of the language is easier to understand when you can see them being acted out. The scene where Macbeth sees Banquo's ghost is hard to imagine but when it is acted out it is a lot easier to follow. There are many versions of Macbeth, in the theatre it is set in the 19th century in the middle of a war. The language is the same and so are the characters, the only thing different is the settings. Although the theatre production was very good and told the story well I think the film version was better. I could understand the film a lot better, I could see the characters reactions more clearly and it felt more realistic. You could clearly see Macbeth's character change whereas in the theatre I found it hard to follow Macbeth's behavior. Macbeth is a very dramatic play and is portrayed brilliantly in both the film and theatrical production. Shakespeare uses dramatic language to clearly show characters feelings. The film uses dramatic music to help set the mood and scene which is effective. Shakespeare uses many visual images in the play, he always brings the characters actions and thoughts back to nature, he describes killing someone in there sleep as going against nature because when someone is asleep they are at peace and defenseless. In away this shows Macbeth as a coward because he is too scared to confront Duncan when he is awake and able to fight back. Like any good play, good always triumphs over evil and it is the same in Macbeth. Macbeth is the cause of his own downfall and his own death! ...read more.

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