'Coriolanus' [Blu-ray+DVD Combo]
(Ralph Fiennes, Gerard Butler, et al / DVD+Blu Ray / R / 2012 / Anchor Bay Entertainment)
Overview: The classic Shakespeare legend of honor and betrayal has been reimagined. Caius Martius 'Coriolanus' (star and director Ralph Fiennes) is a feared and revered Roman General, suddenly pitted against his own city and fellow citizens.
DVD Verdict: My goodness, this film is one incredible, time investing spectacle that, from moment number one will either have you engrossed or have you turning it off! But, let's put it this way, if you rented or purchased 'Coriolanus' you already know what you are in for. And that means 2 hours worth of Shakespeare-written speeches from his play of the same name. And yes it is hard going from the off, but if you stick with it you will be rewarded with a cinematic jewel that will last in your memories for years to come.
The formidable task of both directing and acting in a Shakespeare play has attracted previous talents as Orson Welles and Kenneth Branagh, but here Fiennes' results are beyond powerful and incredible. An unrepentant Coriolanus throughout is one of the most compeling of immense performances, one in which keeps the action moving. Vanessa Redgrave stars opposite Fiennes as Coriolanus' mother Volumnia, and she gives us yet another of her strong performances. Also too is Gerard Butler as Aufidius (although his thick Scottish accent is not suited to Shakespeare), and Brian Cox puts in yet another film stealing performance as Fiennes only political ally, Menenius.
And so, generally speaking, this production is gripping and true to the original narrative and dialogue. It's a worthy and laudable endeavor, and I would commend it with confidence to any afficionado of the Bard. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
Commentary by Director/Actor Ralph Fiennes
The Making of 'Coriolanus'