The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.0263 Monday, 15 February 1999.
From: Benjamin Sher <
Date: Saturday, 13 Feb 1999 13:59:01 -0500
Subject: Romeo and Juliet Video
I forgot to mention Romeo and Juliet as one of the videos on
This is a BBC Production but it is not a filmed play but a film,
featuring Celia Johnson, Michael Horden, Joseph O' Connor and Anthony
Andrews with a memorable opening by John Gielgud as the Chorus) and
directed by Alvin Rakoff. No date is given. It is available both in
broadband (Video, Broadband, Shakespeare) or 56k narrow-band by
selecting simply Video.
I recommend it both as a fine performance and as a fine illustration of
the future of Web multimedia, that is, broadband: The screen is
somewhere between a small screen and real full-screen. More like a
double zoom size. But the resolution is sharp and clear, in beautiful,
vivid color and with full synchronization of voice and image at 24
frames per second. Not quite Cable quality but quite close (in
broadband, that is). And no strain on the eyes, since you are sitting
right in front ot the screen. Again, this is only true for broadband.
This film version of Romeo and Juliet is 2 hours and 22 minutes long.
And by the way, it's also in Stereo!
For 56k, go to Broadcast.com, select Video and you should see it right
at the top. For broadband, select Video, then Broadband, then
One sad note: I checked the King Lear. Clearly a fine performance.
However, it is unfortunately only Part I (and it says so). I checked the
timing: 1:45 minutes. What happened to Part II. How can one watch Part I
without being quite outraged. May I ask those of you who have a chance
to see it to consider writing to Broadcast.com (as I have already done)
to urge them to find Part II, to explain to them (these are good people
but literature is not their bag) that King Lear is not just an ordinary
play or video but one of the great treasures of English literature.
That's the only way they will get the message. The more they hear from
us, the more videos we will get in the long run.
Meanwhile, enjoy Romeo and Juliet!