Shakespeare’s birth and death are reckoned to have been both on 23 April. Hundreds of film adaptations of his work and life exist but Chimes at Midnight is one of the very best. Directed by Orson Welles, with a stellar cast including John Gielgud, Margaret Rutherford, Jeanne Moreau, Fernando Rey and Welles himself, the film tells of the relationships between Sir John Falstaff, Prince Hal and King Henry IV. The script draws on five of Shakespeare’s plays. Apart from the psychological drama in which Hal is shown to be torn between loyalty to his father, the King, and friendship with Falstaff, there is also a tremendous Battle of Shrewsbury. Welles thought this among his best work and it’s a film to be relished.
This film is programmed by Buxton Film and features no trailers.
Director: Orson Welles