• Post category:Movies
  • Post last modified:March 27, 2019

Lady Macbeth

Rural England, 1865; young Katherine (Florence Pugh) is married to a man (Paul Hilton) who has no love, respect or affection for her, but when he and his cruel father leave their country estate on business, everything changes for her. A stark, economically adapted film that moves its original story from Russia and brings life to the tragedy without sentimentality. Themes of class struggle and the independence of women are naturally woven into a harsh tale that borrows ingredients from both ”Macbeth” and ”Madame Bovary”. The director’s feature-film debut was done with just the right hint of humor, but the main reason why it’s so compelling is Pugh, who’s passionate and ahead of everyone else in her games.

2017-Britain. 89 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Fodhla Cronin O’Reilly. Directed by William Oldroyd. Screenplay: Alice Birch. Novel: Nikolai Leskov (”Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District”). Cast: Florence Pugh (Katherine Lester), Cosmo Jarvis (Sebastian), Naomi Ackie (Anna), Christopher Fairbank, Paul Hilton, Golda Rosheuvel.

Trivia: Previously filmed in the Soviet Union in 1927 and 1989, and by Andrzej Wajda as Siberian Lady Macbeth (1962).

Last word: “What we found on location was barren – just a big empty castle in Durham county, which is in northeastern England. I went to Durham University, so I knew that area. This castle is the family seat of the Earl of Durham, Lambton Castle. We were very lucky to have it, because there’s a river by it, there are forests, and we could shoot a lot of our exteriors around the castle, and then we could also move in our production office and unit base. We basically had a small studio in this castle, which was ideal. That also meant we could shoot chronologically. But quite a lot of British Victorian period dramas use heavy drapes and dark woods and stuff it with clutter. We wanted to try and create a vacuum, an airless environment that was light and bright, and we wanted to make that feel stifling rather than closing it down and making it dark.” (Oldroyd, Film Comment)



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