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Shakespeare Outdoes Himself!
on April 14, 2000
This was the first play performed at the Globe Theatre. For that reason alone, this play deserves special attention. But the characters, the language, and this interesting situation represent Shakespeare's finest efforts. Cassius is ruthless with a malicious attitude. But he honestly fears what Caesar will do if he is crowned. Brutus is a good and honest man. He contemplates joining Cassius to kill Caesar despite the fact that Caesar loves him as a friend. (In history as well, Caesar was notably kind to Brutus.) But yet he too fears that if Caesar is crowned, Rome will bleed. Mark Antony is convincing as Caesar's loyal aid who SEEMS insignificant at first. But after Caesar is killed, he emerges as the most powerful and intelligent character in the play. What makes this play so phenomenal is that we can easily understand and sympathize with any of these major characters. (Even though they are on opposite sides.) What's left? Only chilling omens like the Soothsayer, the storm, the ghost of Caesar, etc. Only memorable passages like Mark Antony's famous 'honorable' speech. If you like this play, I suggest the B & W version where James Mason does Brutus, John Gielgud does Cassius, and Marlon Brando does Mark Antony.