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


1948, Orson Welles, USA, 107 min.

Show Times

  • Fri, Feb 22nd 2:00pm
  • Tue, Feb 26th 6:00pm

"One of the director's most personal creations, it's a courageous experiment with a craggy barbaric splendor all its own."--Elliott Stein, Village Voice

Coming close on the heels of Laurence Olivier's Oscar-winning HAMLET, Welles's first Shakespeare film was buried under an avalanche of unfavorable comparisons. Welles himself supervised a drastically recut and redubbed 85-minute version that was released in 1950, but, since the rediscovery of his original version in 1985, the film's reputation has steadily risen. Filmed quickly and economically at the B-movie house Republic Pictures, MACBETH is charged with rough-hewn energy (Welles described it as a "rough charcoal sketch") and visual inventiveness. With its relentlessly claustrophobic atmosphere and expressionist touches, it evokes film noir and Universal horror movies, while setting the stage for Welles's boldly cinematic approaches to Shakespeare in OTHELLO and CHIMES AT MIDNIGHT. 35mm restored print courtesy of the UCLA Film & Television Archive; restoration funding provided by The Film Foundation and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. (MR)

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

Play Trailer