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Cast: Ralph Fiennes, Gerard Butler, Brian Cox, Vanessa Redgrave


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Ralph Fiennes' directorial debut, Coriolanus, scripted by John Logan, updates one of Shakespeare's more difficult plays without sacrificing the Bard's original dialogue. Set in modern times, the movie stars Fiennes as the title character, a fierce General able to fight Rome's most dreaded enemies as well as quell civil unrest from a


Ralph Fiennes' directorial debut, Coriolanus, scripted by John Logan, updates one of Shakespeare's more difficult plays without sacrificing the Bard's original dialogue. Set in modern times, the movie stars Fiennes as the title character, a fierce General able to fight Rome's most dreaded enemies as well as quell civil unrest from a lack of food. When politicians convince Coriolanus to become a political leader, his natural fierceness and lack of political instincts lead to him being disgraced by other politicians and eventually forced to leave Rome after being branded a traitor. He then joins with his former enemies to invade Rome, and the only person who may be able to talk him out of this revenge plan is his mother (Vanessa Redgrave). The film, which features a portion of the play's dialogue transferred into the mouths of talking-heads on television news shows, played at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
Recasting Shakespeare in modern terms is a tricky but necessary conceit. To keep these immortal works associated in people's minds only with Elizabethan England is to miss how universally powerful many of them still are. Screenwriter John Logan achieves something close to greatness with this version of Coriolanus, and first-time director Ralph Fiennes assembles a stellar cast while following through on the best elements of the script. Fiennes also stars as the title character, a Roman general initially named Caius Martius, who lives only to fight and has no other ambitions or goals. As the movie opens, he's putting down civil unrest and expressing his disgust for the people of Rome at the same time. Soon after, he fights against Rome's greatest foreign enemies, led by Tullus Aufidius (Gerard Butler), an enemy general and possibly the only person the title character has any admiration for at all. Returning home a hero, Caius is bestowed the title of Coriolanus, and he becomes a national symbol used by politicians for their advantage during a period when food is scarce and anger at the government is high. Coriolanus, despite sage advice from his mother (Vanessa Redgrave) and his lone political ally Menenius (Brian Cox), has neither the psychological nor emotional equipment to be a crowd-pleasing politico, and he ends up banished from his country. At this point, he joins forces with Tullus in order to invade and overthrow Rome. Anyone convinced they can't understand or enjoy Shakespeare is still likely to be drawn in by how modern this adaptation looks. The action is often presented as part of a 24-hour cable newscast, with talking heads arguing the issues of the day. This brilliant decision gives the film a thoroughly contemporary feeling and allows the complex issues and motivations to remain crystal clear for the audience. The fighting sequences specifically recall not only Iraq War footage, but such recent war films as The Hurt Locker (Barry Ackroyd was the cinematographer on both movies). Inevitably, though, any Shakespeare adaptation's success rests largely with the actors, and on that count Coriolanus is a marvel. Fiennes glowers and scowls, his barely repressed rage often simmering into terrifying rants -- an element of the character that's showcased in the scene that gets him ostracized from Rome. The always reliable Brian Cox plays the political mastermind who knows that any effort to tame this warrior will fail, but tries anyway. Butler is about the only actor who comes up short, but that's primarily because his hard stares and intensity can't compare with Fiennes. As good as all the men are, it's Vanessa Redgrave who steals the movie. As Coriolanus' overly supportive mother, she makes one final attempt to stop her revenge-minded son from following through with his plan to invade Rome. It's a spectacular scene because this older woman seems to be the only one physically and mentally strong enough to stand up to her son. She's marvelous, and Fiennes matches her, signaling in the subtlest of ways how this woman can get past his deep levels of aggression. It's a warped mother-and-son relationship that, as played by these two masterful actors, is simultaneously beautiful and disturbing. Coriolanus has never been considered one of Shakespeare's greatest plays, and while this particular adaptation probably won't do anything to alter its status as a lesser work, it certainly announces that Ralph Fiennes has the skill and imagination to be a director, if for no other reason than because he knows to surround himself with people as talented as Logan, Ackroyd, and Redgrave. Unlike his character, he understands that humility often leads to strength.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Sales rank:

Special Features

The making of Coriolanus ; Feature commentary by director Ralph Fiennes

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Ralph Fiennes Caius Martius 'Coriolanus'
Gerard Butler Tullus Aufidius
Brian Cox Menenius
Vanessa Redgrave Volumnia
Jessica Chastain Virgilia
John Kani General Cominius
James Nesbitt Tribune Sicinius
Paul Jesson Tribune Brutus
Lubna Azabal First Citizen (Tamora)
Ashraf Barhom Second Citizen (Cassius)
Zoran Cica Citizen
Milos Dabic Citizen
Nicolas Isia Citizen
Zoran Miljkovic Citizen
Marija Mogbolu Citizen
Milan Perovic Citizen
Nenad Ristic Citizen
Lawrence Stevenson Citizen
Marko Stojanovic Citizen
Tamara Krcunovic Citizen
Zu Yu Hua Citizen
Olivera Viktorovic-Duraskovic Citizen
Danijela Vranjes Citizen
Slavko Stimac Volsce Lieutenant
Ivan Dordevic Young Roman Soldier
Radovan Vujovic 1st Soldier
Jovan Belobrkovic 2nd Soldier
Dan Tana 1st Senator
Miodrag Milovanov 2nd Senator
Dragan Micanovic Titus Lartius
Radoslav Milenkovic Volsce Politician
Radomir Nikolic 1st Volsce Soldier
Zoran Pajic 2nd Volsce Soldier
Harry Fenn Young Martius
Elizabeta Dorevska Maid
Dusan Janicijevic Old Man in Corioles
Jon Snow TV Anchorman
Nikki Amuka-Bird TV Pundit
David Yelland TV Pundit
Andrija Maricic 3rd Senator
Svetislav Goncic 4th Senator
Uros Zdjelar Young Senator
Bora Nenic Cleaner in Corridor
Slobodan Ninkovic War Vet
Mona Hammond Jamaican Woman
Slobodan Pavelkic Young Man in Market
Dragoljub Vojnov Shopkeeper
Keiron Jecchinis TV War Correspondent
Mirko Pantelic Camp Barber

Technical Credits
Ralph Fiennes Director,Producer
Barry Ackroyd Cinematographer
Zoran Andric Asst. Director
Anthony Buckner Executive Producer
Tina Subic Dodocic Makeup
Ilan Eshkeri Score Composer
Ricky Eyres Production Designer
Christopher Figg Executive Producer
Nicolas Gaster Editor
Aleksandra Keskinov Costumes/Costume Designer
Christine Langan Executive Producer
John Logan Producer,Screenwriter
Carolyn Marks-Blackwood Associate Producer
Norman Merry Executive Producer
Rade Mihajlovic Art Director
Marko Miskovic Executive Producer
Ian Neil Musical Direction/Supervision
Bojana Nikitovic Costumes/Costume Designer
Daniel Parker Makeup
Zivojin Zika Petrovic Associate Producer
Misko Stevanovic Production Manager
Aleksandar Leka Tadic Production Manager
Gabrielle Tana Producer
Julia Taylor-Stanley Producer
Jason Troughton Special Effects Supervisor
Colin Vaines Producer
Kevan Van Thompson Co-producer
Robert Whitehouse Executive Producer
William Young Executive Producer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Coriolanus
1. Chapter 1 [7:52]
2. Chapter 2 [5:06]
3. Chapter 3 [4:41]
4. Chapter 4 [9:55]
5. Chapter 5 [6:33]
6. Chapter 6 [8:13]
7. Chapter 7 [7:25]
8. Chapter 8 [4:48]
9. Chapter 9 [6:45]
10. Chapter 10 [6:15]
11. Chapter 11 [:41]
12. Chapter 12 [4:37]
13. Chapter 13 [8:07]
14. Chapter 14 [4:02]
15. Chapter 15 [5:58]
16. Chapter 16 [6:11]
17. Chapter 17 [12:13]
18. Chapter 18 [8:05]


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