fbpx Chimes at Midnight | Gene Siskel Film Center
Film Series : Orson Welles: The Other Side of the Argument

Chimes at Midnight


1965, Orson Welles, Spain, 115 min.
With Orson Welles, Keith Baxter

Show Times

  • Fri, Apr 5th 4:00pm
  • Tue, Apr 9th 6:00pm

"This is a magnificent film, clearly among Welles' greatest work...It is also magnificent Shakespeare."--Roger Ebert

The recipient of mixed reviews and poor distribution when first released, CHIMES AT MIDNIGHT is now considered by many to be the greatest of all Shakespeare films; it was also Welles's personal favorite among his own films. Portions of five different plays (primarily "Henry IV, Parts I and II," and "Henry V") are woven together to focus on Sir John Falstaff as the center of a tragicomic narrative tracing his relationship as mentor, boon companion, bad example, and eventual embarrassment to Prince Hal (Baxter), later King Henry V. Welles hearty, heartfelt, ultimately heartbreaking performance as Falstaff heads up a cast that includes John Gielgud as Henry IV, Jeanne Moreau as Doll Tearsheet, and Margaret Rutherford as Mistress Quickly. Despite being filmed under difficult, underfinanced conditions, CHIMES displays Welles's gifts for visualization and editing in full form, capped by the spectacularly brutal Battle of Shrewsbury scene. DCP digital. (MR)

The Tuesday screening will include a lecture/discussion by renowned critic and Welles authority Jonathan Rosenbaum.

Play Trailer