Laurence Olivier’s Hamlet (1948) is celebrated for dramatizing the turmoil of its central character through means of expression unique to cinema.  Borrowing conventions both from German cinema of the 1920s and from contemporaneous classical Hollywood cinema, the film streamlines the play in order to foreground Hamlet’s subjectivity, written largely in the gloomy recesses of Elsinore. Adapted and directed by its star, Olivier’s film remains a touchstone both in the cinematic treatment of Hamlet and in the history of Shakespeare on film.

Mark Rose (English, UCSB) will join moderator Jim Kearney (English, UCSB) for a post-screening discussion.