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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
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By David on 05-04-14
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars
I think that reading Shakespeare's plays does not do them justice - they aren't meant to be read, they are meant to be performed, and seen performed. However, you also miss a lot if you aren't already familiar with the context and the Shakespearean language, because of course ol' Will packs a lot into every single line.
So, this is the famous play about the conspirators who assassinated Julius Caesar, fearing his ambition to become king. Among the famous lines to which we owe this play: "Et tu, Brutus?" "Cry havoc, and let slip the dogs of war!" "Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once." And "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves."
Mark Antony's speech is probably the highlight of the play. Having just been informed of Caesar's death, and with the assassins having convinced the Roman public that they'd saved Rome from a tyrant, Mark Antony gives his famous speech which is a masterpiece of mob manipulation, turning them against the conspirators and in favor of the slain Caesar.
The conflicts are patriotism versus friendship, loyalty versus ideals, and the taint of self-interest always present in one's motives. As a tragedy, this is one of those Shakespearean plays where almost everyone ends up falling on a sword one way or the other.
Brutus is clearly the protagonist, but I think Mark Antony wins it.
Performances were clear and dramatic in this production. Not quite as good as seeing the play, but all the action is clear enough with minimal sound effects.
93 of 96 people found this review helpful
By TM on 21-03-14
Absolutely Comes Alive
Any additional comments?
I've dabbled in Shakespeare ever since school, but whilst finding the plays dramatically and thematically interesting, the language is often somewhat inaccessible. Hence the dabbling.
I have also always been very interested in the history of ancient Rome. I've read Julius Caesar's "Conquest of Gaul", visited the ruins of ancient Rome, watched the old BBC adaptation of "I, Claudius" (which is beyond my words to describe how fabulous it is). Read books on Cicero and countless documentaries.
So these two elements combined were fantastic for me.
This audiobook was on sale and although short (but unabridged) is BOGO well spent.
Incredibly good performance by the audio actors. A few sound effects here and there to give a little color and to punctuate certain events that we cannot see, but not so many as to distract from the dialogue.
Just perfect. Brings this play to life and makes it very accessible, at least to me.
I enjoyed it so much I'm looking to see what other options are available in the same series.
13 of 14 people found this review helpful