William Shakespeare's Macbeth Lady Macbeth's role in the events of Shakespeare's play 'Macbeth' is
an important one. Without her, it is doubtful that Macbeth would have
gone through with the slaying of Duncan, especially in such a
cowardly, murderous way that he does. This is shown with Macbeth's
continued change of mind about committing the murder. When he speaks
with his wife in Act 1, Scene 5, he states. 'We will speak further'.
And subsequently in Act 1, Scene 7, 'We will proceed no further in
this businessâ€¦.'. At the beginning of the play the Macbeth's
relationship is depicted as being one of a loving, caring and
understanding marriage. They appear to compliment each other within
this, but yet, each brings something different into their marriage.
Dame Judi Dench's depiction of Lady Macbeth in Trevor Nunn's 1978
production was one of a more mature, plainer woman, than that of the
Polanski adaptation. With little or no makeup, plain hairstyling and
dark bland costumes, Trevor Nunn's production further complimented
this style with a dimly lit sparse setting, similar in lay out to that
of how Shakespeare would have originally portrayed the play on stage .
With this format, the audience is drawn more into how and what is
being spoken and the facial expressions of the characters, than by
being distracted by any 'period' surrounding scenery. This in turn
makes Trevor Nunn's, Lady Macbeth as portrayed by Dame Judi Dench a
more convincing character, unlike the young, fresh faced, virgin like
Lady Macbeth in Polanski's adaptation which included many additional
scene's, such as the killing of enemy survivors of the Battle and the
subsequent hanging of the original traitor 'The Thane of Cawdor'.
Polanski omits part of Lady Macbeth's speech in Act 1, Scene 7
including 'â€¦Pluck'd my nipple from his boneless gums,â€¦'. In doing
this, he robs Lady Macbeth's character of much of her emotion, totally
failing her in her Soliloquy on the battlements. However in contrast,
Dame Judi Dench's depiction of the same scene is wonderfully portrayed
with great quality of emotion and feeling which totally out classes
Francesca Annes attempt.
Lady Macbeth is of strong character, stronger than that of Macbeth
himself and because of this, she is the dominant figure, a figure that
knows all her husbands weaknesses. In her Soliloquy in Act 1, Scene 5,
once she receives word from Macbeth of his great success and his
subsequent meeting with the, 'weird sisters,' she states, 'â€¦I fear thy
nature, It is too full o'th'milk of human kindnessâ€¦'. With her mind
instantly engaged on murderous ambition, Lady Macbeth uses all her
feminine charm, even questioning her husbands manliness, in an attempt
to manipulate him, to further her evil ambitions....