Prospero’s Books

Prospero’s Books


Directed by Peter Greenway

Production Budget:

1.5 million

 Total Lifetime Grosses

Domestic:  $1,750,301

Release Date:

November 15, 1991

I was personally quite ignorant when it comes to Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’ however I know what I like. Admittedly I was not too concerned with the story. What I got from the film was purely visual. The rich brown tones throughout gave it a warm ethereal quality, like a rich tapestry, or a fine meal.

The sets were grandiose to say the least. The film was approached as Shakespeare would have intended. As a lavish theatrical production. The gestural qualities of the actors exaggerated and inspirational.

The symbolism and the imagery were intense. The parallel between the plush clothing of the young suitor reflected in the peacock was interesting. Vanity and pride were acknowledged in this character.

The spirits unclad or partially clad reflect their raw, feral nature. The pure energy they encompass is not bound by human attributes whether virtuous or not. They move with grace and a jerkiness of machinery, suggesting their enslavement to Prospero, their need for him and his for them.

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