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King Richard the Second (1978)

The incompetent King Richard II is deposed by Henry Bolingbroke and undergoes a crisis of identity once he is no longer King.

Director:

David Giles

Writer:

William Shakespeare (play)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Derek Jacobi ... Richard II
John Gielgud ... John of Gaunt
Jon Finch ... Henry Bolingbroke
Wendy Hiller ... Duchess of York
Charles Gray ... Duke of York
Mary Morris ... Duchess of Gloucester
David Swift ... Duke of Northumberland
Clifford Rose ... Bishop of Carlisle
Charles Keating ... Duke of Aumerle
Richard Owens ... Thomas Mowbray
Janet Maw Janet Maw ... Queen
Jeffrey Holland Jeffrey Holland ... Duke of Surrey
Jeremy Bulloch ... Henry Percy
Robin Sachs ... Bushy
Damien Thomas ... Bagot
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Storyline

The incompetent King Richard II is deposed by Henry Bolingbroke and undergoes a crisis of identity once he is no longer King.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 December 1978 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Richard II See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Part of the long running BBC Television Shakespeare project which ran between 1978 and 1985. See more »

Quotes

Henry Bolingbroke: My heart this covenant makes, my lips thus seals it.
See more »

Connections

Version of Richard II (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Wonderful, hard to think of what is wrong with it
30 August 2012 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

I have loved Shakespeare since reading Twelfth Night in my sixth year at primary school. And I admire most of the actors here, most notably Derek Jacobi and John Gielgud. This performance of Richard II is just wonderful. The production values are very good if not as good as the dialogue and performances. The sets do convince you of the time and place at least, and the costumes do have a sense of regality to them. Shakespeare's dialogue is brilliant, both poetic and forceful.

And the story of loyalty and betrayal as well as rebellion and politics is always compelling and delivered and staged with utter conviction. All the performances are superb, delivering their lines gracefully and intelligently with a good deal of intensity when needed. In particular Derek Jacobi, his performance is a masterclass in abject humiliation that later replaces Richard's kingly pride complete with a regal demeanour and a sense of human thought. Jon Finch is a handsome yet appropriately dark and brooding Bolingbroke and Charles Gray and Wendy Hiller give equally adept performances, but it was John Gielgud that gave the best supporting performance, his This is England...speech is chillingly moving in how elegiac the dialogue and delivery was.

Overall, the brilliant performances especially were what made this Richard II so great. 10/10 Bethany Cox


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