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A Midwinter's Tale (1995)

In the Bleak Midwinter (original title)
Trailer
1:33 | Trailer
A group of theater actors plays "Hamlet" in a provincial village, faced with their own temptations, disappointments, and joys.

Director:

Kenneth Branagh

Writer:

Kenneth Branagh
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Briers ... Henry Wakefield (Claudius, the Ghost, and the Player King)
Hetta Charnley Hetta Charnley ... Molly
Joan Collins ... Margaretta D'Arcy
Nicholas Farrell ... Tom Newman (Laertes, Fortinbras, and messengers)
Mark Hadfield ... Vernon Spatch (Polonius, Marcellus, and First Gravedigger)
Gerard Horan ... Carnforth Greville (Rosencrantz, Guildenstern, Horatio, and Barnardo)
Celia Imrie ... Fadge
Michael Maloney ... Joe Harper (Hamlet)
Jennifer Saunders ... Nancy Crawford
Julia Sawalha ... Nina Raymond (Ophelia)
John Sessions ... Terry Du Bois (Queen Gertrude)
Ann Davies Ann Davies ... Mrs. Branch
James D. White James D. White ... Tim
Robert Hines Robert Hines ... Mortimer
Allie Byrne Allie Byrne ... Tap Dancer
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Storyline

Out of work actor Joe Harper (Michael Maloney) volunteers to help try and save his sister's local church for the community by putting on a Christmas production of Hamlet, somewhat against the advice of his agent Margaretta D'Arcy (Dame Joan Collins). As the cast he assembles are still available even at Christmas and are prepared to do it on a "profit sharing" basis (that is, they may not get paid anything) he cannot expect, and does not get, the cream of the crop. But although they all bring their own problems and foibles along, something bigger starts to emerge in the perhaps aptly named village of Hope. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The drama. The passion. The intrigue... And the rehearsals haven't even started.

Genres:

Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 February 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Midwinter's Tale See more »

Filming Locations:

England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$19,000, 11 February 1996

Gross USA:

$469,571

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$469,571
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Joe Harper (the alter ego of Sir Kenneth Branagh) turns down a role in a big science fiction trilogy to return to his company to play Hamlet. Branagh was originally considered for the role of the younger Obi-wan Kenobi in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (1999). See more »

Quotes

[Severely depressed, Joe wonders what makes life worth living]
Vernon Spatch: Rachmaninoff. That bit in Brief Encounter. And Brief Encounter, actually. That makes life worth living. I'll buy you the video for Christmas.
See more »

Connections

References Star Trek: The Original Series (1966) See more »

Soundtracks

Why Must The Show Go On
Written by Noël Coward
© Chappell Music Ltd
by kind permission of Warner Chappell Music Ltd.
Recording courtesy of Sony Records
by Arrangement with Sony Music Entertainment (UK) Ltd.
Performance cleared by American Federation of Musicians
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Ya gotta love Shakespeare! No matter how it's twisted, it's great.
20 August 2005 | by jambalayavalSee all my reviews

Nobody does Shakespeare better than Kenneth Branagh, and this time, he's taken it to a whole new level. Putting together one of the Bard's best works with no money in a cold, damp church at Christmas may sound like a greater tragedy than the play itself. The frustrated actor/director, the cast composed of a band of merry misfits, Joan Collins playing an agent (!) and the god-awful ideas for unique sets and costumes only add to the already engaging tale of passion and deception that is Hamlet. You can't take it too seriously. But the script is intelligently funny, the experienced cast hits their marks, and even those who don't like Shakespeared will be entertained. It's a comedy, it's a mystery, it's a classic...all rolled into one.


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