Final Day - Tuesday, February 19

CAESAR MUST DIE

  • 1:00
  • 2:45
  • 4:30
  • 6:15
  • 8:00
  • 9:45

$7 Member   $12.50 Regular

WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY PAOLO AND VITTORIO TAVIANI

CAESAR MUST DIE

Neither documentary, nor fictional drama, CAESAR MUST DIE is a brilliant mélange of the two by the renowned Taviani Brothers, best known to American audiences for PADRE PADRONE and THE NIGHT OF THE SHOOTING STARS. The film was shot entirely in the maximum security block of Rome’s Rebibbia prison, home to men serving long sentences for murder, drug-trafficking, and Mafia-related activities. Theater director Fabio Cavalli holds auditions for Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, a play steeped in murder, conspiracy, and revenge, all of which resonate with this cast. Encouraged to speak in their native dialect, these tough guys have great flair for conveying theatrical angst and taking anger to its logical extreme. What could have been just a well-worn gimmick becomes, in the Tavianis’ hands, an eloquent, probing look at the real-life consequences of lies and betrayals among men who value power above all else. Winner of the Golden Bear at the 2012 Berlin Film Festival.         

ITALY • 2012 • 76 MINS. • IN ITALIAN WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES • ADOPT FILMS

REVIEWS

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“(A) cinematic hymn to the power of theater. The Tavianis’ film follows a group of Italian prisoners as they rehearse and perform Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, but it is not only a documentary but also an exploration of the boundaries between real life and dramatic representation.”
A.O. Scott, The New York Times

“At once ancient and dangerously new.”
– Anthony Lane, The New Yorker

“How can anyone not adore Paolo and Vittorio Taviani’s CAESAR MUST DIE? It enlarges your notion of what theater and cinema, what art itself, can do – it dissolves every boundary it meets… Men who’ll never again see the world outside their prison walls have a way to soar.”
– David Edelstein, New York Magazine

“Both documents and reimagines for the screen an actual production of Julius Caesar performed by the inmates of a prison in Rome. The wonder of the film lies in the depth these amateurs bring to their roles.”
– Stuart Klawans, The Nation

“The black-and-white cinematography is classic in style, evoking not raw documentary but the stark elegance of an Italian studio production of the 1950s or 1960s; that is to say, the main body of the film is presented in a manner almost indistinguishable from fiction, as if it were possible that these prisoners might be actors playing prisoners playing actors... Julius Caesar comes through with a force of actual feeling that I have not seen in other stage productions or film adaptations.”
– Geoffrey O’Brien, NY Review of Books

“Suavely shot and set to a moody jazz score.”
– J. Hoberman, Artinfo.com

“The movie is so intricate and absorbing… Emotion is felt and humanity is explored… An examination of Shakespeare’s sublime characters who have weathered the test of time and relevancy. Aided by their perception of the play as Italian in nature and subject matter, the prisoners lay claim to their characters in a way that adds an undeniable element of veracity.  The Taviani brothers’ meticulously mixed soundtrack… reflects the pathos of the narrative.”
– Maria Garcia, Film Journal International online

Trailer

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