Macbeth by William Shakespeare
'Macbeth,' one of William Shakespeare's shortest and bloodiest
tragedies was written in 1606. Macbeth is also possibly the most
memorable. It is a mysterious and somewhat powerful play.
It has also attracted various film directors such as Polanski. Roman
Polanski is famous for his horror and thriller - like films. He
decided to express his interpretation on it and filmed an unexpected
and different version of the play 'Macbeth.'
The three witches in the tragedy Macbeth are introduced right at the
beginning of the play and the brief opening few scenes give an
immediate impression of mystery, horror and uncertainty. This is a
sign of things to come as witchcraft is used as one of the main themes
of the play. The witches create an atmosphere of evil and disorder.
In this scene, the witches confer to decide when and where to meet
Macbeth for the first time. They plan to encourage him by means of
witchcraft to carry out deeds which will result in his untimely death.
This is not going to be a bright day bathed in sunlight, there is no
sun in this Macbeth. Nothing else is happening so you notice this, and
what Polanski is doing is drawing your attention to how he will use
colour in the film. It is a measured, low - key start.
The shot is held, a cough is heard and a stick gradually appears in
the bottom left foreground. An old wrinkled hand covered in grime is
guiding it, as a circle is drawn in the sand. Hands scoop out the
earth and dig down. There is a cut to a shot of a seagull circling the
sky, sending out sounds of desolation.
A noose is taken from a cart that the witches are dragging with them,
it is folded and buried in the hole in the sand. The witches have
faces, one of them is young and does not look like a witch, she also
does not seem to speak, the other two witches are old and one has no
A severed hand and forearm are buried and an aristocratic dagger is
placed in its clenched fingers. This gives the idea of ambition, and a