Revistes Catalanes amb Accés Obert (RACO)

Author and Authority. John Gielgud's Prospero in Peter Greenway's "Prospero's Books"

Marco Duse


In 1991, film director Peter Greenaway turned William Shakespeare’s "The Tempest" into an experimental and visually daring film called "Prospero’s Books", starring John Gielgud as Prospero. Shot on 35mm film and edited making extensive use of electronic image processing, "Prospero’s Books" is a technologically advanced phantasmagoria that reveals the multiple aspects of Shakespeare's meta-masque. In the film, Gielgud voices all the characters, thus turning "The Tempest" into a creative act that unravels inside Prospero’s own mind. This way, "Prospero’s Books" questions the roles of the author, the actor and the director, taking "The Tempest" as a pre-text to a meta-linguistic meditation.

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