Missing Shakespeare – Amazon Beats Netflix Again!

The Montford Park Players closed their outdoor season a week ago this past Saturday with the last performance of Mandy Bean’s Richard II. I am already missing it. They are having an indoor run of Macbeth but that doesn’t start until next month. Thankfully there is plenty of bardic material streaming.

Amazon Prime has a very nice selection of Shakespeare from BBC: Julius Caesar, As You Like It (Helen Mirren), Macbeth (Nicol Williamson), Othello (Anthony Hopkins), The Merchant of Venice, Romeo and Juliet, The Taming of the Shrew, Hamlet (Derek Jacobi), The Tempest, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

They also have movie versions of Julius Caesar (Marlon Brando), The Taming of the Shrew (Richard Burton), Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead (Richard Dreyfuss), Much Ado About Nothing (Kenneth Branagh), Hamlet (Kenneth Branagh), Romeo and Juliet (Olivia Hussey), Ran (Kurosawa’s King Lear), and As You Like It (Laurence Olivier).

As if that weren’t enough Amazon also has The Shakespeare Conspiracy, Shakespeare Behind Bars, Great Performances: King Lear (Ian McKellan), Shakespeare’s Globe Theater Restored, F. Murray Abraham on A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Shakespeare and the Spanish Connection.

Netflix streaming has Kenneth Branagh’s Henry V and Much Ado About Nothing, two versions of A Midsummer Might’s Dream (1968 and 1996), two versions of Macbeth (Patrick Stewart and Sam Worthington), Ian McKellan in King Lear, and Shakespeare in Love.

For documentaries it has: Playing Shakespeare, Shakespeare’s Women & Claire Bloom, Shakespeare Behind Bars, and In Search of Shakespeare. There is also a BBC comedy about a Shakespeare festival entitled Slings & Arrows.

My wife bought this one-man version of Macbeth to listen to on our travels. I’ve really enjoyed but you have to listen hard to follow it because not only is Alan Cumming reading Shakespearean dialogue but he is doing it in various Scottish accents. This must have been an amazing show but it is a punishing listen.

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