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Despite winning several Oscars, Olivier's (condensed) version of Shakespeare's masterpiece makes for frustrating viewing: for all its 'cinematic' ambitions (the camera prowling pointlessly along the gloomy corridors of Elsinore), it's basically a stagy showcase for the mannered performance of the director in the lead role (though he's ably supported by a number of British theatrical stalwarts). Not half as powerful as Kozintsev's marvellous Russian version.

By: GA

Release details

Duration: 155 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Laurence Olivier
Screenwriter: Laurence Olivier, Alan Dent
Cast: Laurence Olivier
Eileen Herlie
Basil Sydney
Jean Simmons
Felix Aylmer
Stanley Holloway
Terence Morgan
Peter Cushing
Esmond Knight
Anthony Quayle
Christopher Lee
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