Chimes at Midnight

Spain | 1966 | 116 minutes | Orson Welles

Unavailable for years and now back in a brilliant restoration, Orson Welles' groundbreaking adaptation blends five Shakespeare plays into a single gritty tale focusing on the character who was his lifelong obsession, the drunken rapscallion Falstaff.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

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Friday, June 24, 2016

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Saturday, June 25, 2016

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Sunday, June 26, 2016

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Monday, June 27, 2016

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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

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Thursday, June 30, 2016

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"Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown," King Henry IV mutters to himself in his eponymous play, but the quote could just as easily apply to Orson Welles. A giant in the worlds of theater and film, Welles nevertheless had a tumultuous journey through Hollywood, constantly battling studios over final cut and, in the most storied part of his career, going head-to-head with newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst over the thinly fictionalized narrative of Citizen Kane. By the 1960s, Welles had little clout, going so far as to promise to direct an adaptation of "Treasure Island"—a film that never came to fruition—in order to finance his lifelong dream project, 1966's Chimes at Midnight, now newly restored from a long-lost 35mm print. A groundbreaking and gritty adaptation that streamlines five of Shakespeare's plays—both parts of "Henry IV," "Richard II," "Henry V," and "The Merry Wives of Windsor"—Chimes refocuses the Bard's narratives on the relationship between childhood friends Prince Hal (Keith Baxter) and the roguish Sir John Falstaff (Welles). As Falstaff assists Hal in navigating the complicated and deadly world of British royal politics, even heading into battle in one of Welles' most triumphant directorial sequences, he is increasingly neglected and estranged, and the character once considered mere comic relief is transformed into one of Shakespeare's greatest tragic figures.

Director Biography
One of the most influential filmmakers of all times, George Orson Welles, was always fascinated by Shakespeare's work. Welles would go on to adapt, direct, and perform in dozens of the Bard's plays over the years (including his first production for the New Deal's Federal Theatre Project, a "voodoo" "Macbeth," set in Haiti), and to direct three Shakespeare films - Macbeth (1948), Othelloi (1952), and, most magnificent of all, Chimes at Midnight (1966)—as well as the documentary Filming "Othello" (1978). The most complexly conceived and technically brilliant of these films, Chimes at Midnight was the culmination of a career-long passion project that Welles had been working on since before he got into filmmaking.

Sponsored by Honorary Consulate of Spain in Seattle, Accion Cultural Española, KIXI 880 AM

  • Director: Orson Welles
  • Principal Cast: Orson Welles, Keith Baxter, John Gielgud, Norman Rodway, Alan Webb, Tony Beckley, Margaret Rutherford, Jeanne Moreau, Marina Vlady, Fernando Rey
  • Country: Spain
  • Year: 1966
  • Running Time: 116 minutes
  • Producer: Ángel Escolano, Emiliano Piedra, Harry Saltzman, Alessandro Tasca di Cuto
  • Screenplay: Orson Welles
  • Cinematographers: Edmond Richard
  • Editors: Elena Jaumandreu, Fritz Muller
  • Music: Angelo Francesco Lavagnino
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Awards: Cannes Film Festival 1966 (20th Anniversary Prize, Technical Grand Prize)
  • Filmography: Filming “Othello” (1978); F for Fake (1975); The Immortal Story (1968); The Trial (1962); Touch of Evil (1958); Mr. Arkadin (a.k.a., Confidential Report) (1955); Othello (1952); Macbeth (1948); The Lady From Shanghai (1947); The Stranger (1946); Journey Into Fear (1943); The Magnificent Ambersons (1942); Citizen Kane (1941)
  • Language: English
  • Format: DCP
  • US Distributor: Janus Films