Coriolanus is a Roman warrior who dedicates his life and career to defending Rome from foreign invaders. He has it all: a beautiful wife and son, mother who is patriotic, loyal to the family (and controlling to say the least). Marcus Coriolanus has potential to become a powerful politician. But his patriotism is matched by his sense of entitlement of his class status for greater things, which in turn creates resentment from his political enemies. His enemies turn ordinary people against Corealanus and before long, Marcus' career comes to a screeching holt and Marcus Coriolanus finds himself in exile. Nations and people who were his enemies yesterday become his allies tomorrow and Marcus sets on a mission to get his revenge.....
The film is a classic tale of honor and betrayal. Those who are familiar with Shakespeare's tale would know exactly what this film is all about since its core premise is intact. It is about a man of honor; a man whose integrity feels so out of place in this world. Torn between his own principles and pride, the man chooses to be who he is, and the traditions and responsibilities of the world fall down on him. Fiennes' version of Shakespeare's creation is shot more like a war film that comes complete with bloody, intense gun battles and knife to knife combat. Fiennes knew what he was in for and handles everything with careful accuracy and heed. For a man on his directorial debut, Fiennes wields the story with precision to make the Shakespearean story as timely to modern times while resonating the political strife as only Shakespeare ever could.....
Ralph Fiennes (Voldemort in Harry Potter) comes out with an outstanding performance. He is very believable in his role as someone so proud that he would deny himself being subjected to the `nays' of an ungrateful bellowing crowd. Fiennes exhibited that power and intensity that made him so convincing as both a savior and a destroyer of men and nations. Butler is just as capable in his role, but he was easily overshadowed by Fiennes.
Fiennes does so well in modernizing this classic story. He directed with care and uses his own love for the material that he was able to capitalize on the story's key moments to drive the film's momentum. He was able to cut off the excesses of the play and what becomes is a tightly wound drama-thriller. As a performer in his own film, Fiennes was scary and intimidating; if a little enigmatic. Supported by a strong cast in Butler, Redgrave, Cox and Chastain, "Coriolanus " is a powerful film that is worthy of a look.
This film is brilliant, and most watchers will be pleasantly surprised.
Highly recommend it.
Actors: Ralph Fiennes, Gerard Butler
Directors: Ralph Fiennes
Studio: The Weinstein Company
Release Date: May 29, 2012