The performance of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar comes to an end and the performers are rewarded with rapturous applause. The lights go out; the actors leave the stage and return to their cells. They are all inmates of the Roman maximum security prison Rebibbia.
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Brilliant performances by these condemned men, and an inspired film. I've read this play and seen it many times, but never with as much passion as these men who, like the characters they play, have little more to lose.
This strangely affecting retelling of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar via prison inmates is fresh, inventive, moving and relatively short at 73mins. It's a drama within a documentary and the text is given extra weight via the information provided for each characters real crimes & sentence. At times it feels like one of the golden era films with it's black & white rendering and stark prison background. 3.5 stars
Tiyatro ruhunun her yerde ve herkeste bulunduğunun mükemmel bir örneği. Hapishane mahkumlarından oluşan bir tiyatro gösterisini konu alan bu film, Taviani kardeşlerin son dönemlerdeki başarılı örneklerinden. Filmdeki mahkumlardan Sezar rolünü oynayan kişinin bile oyun sonunda döneceği yer hücresidir. Aslında hayatta aynen böyledir. Ne kadar hükümdar olsak da, padişah olsak da gideceğimiz yer bellidir. İzlemelisiniz..
the movie inhabits the interstitial place between an adaptation and a fly-on-the wall documentary with caesar's death being its starting and ending point. the rehearsals move on from limited spaces of cells to hallways and prison yards building an analogy with the fate of brutus who can't deal with an overwhelming sense of guilt and seeing death as an only way out. something that the inmates can relate to.
A poet is a liar as Plato claimed. The same can be said for any artist. What can those who have never experienced something like war actually know about it? As with the tradition of Italian neo-realism this film challenges the notion. The prisoners fully know the betrayal and the struggle for power. The boundaries of reality and art are challenged as the actors seem to be reliving their lives.
The Taviani Brothers are masters. At their age (80's) to pull this off is a miracle. I saw it in a theater not knowing the film's background. To call it a mockumentary lessens the achievement. The line it creates between art and life in both its conception and the application and adaptation of Julius Caesar is profound. Their use of color and B&W, of spaces and faces, of artifice and actuality create a masterpiece.