Macbeth Brought to Life

Macbeth Journal entry #5

After watching Polanski’s rendition of “Macbeth” I was able to view the play from a visual perspective which I enjoyed a lot! The overall atmosphere portrayed in the movie is very dark and gloomy. In my opinion, it isn’t very effective because if you think back to when this play was performed, it would have been performed during the day. This would allow the audience to be surprised when all the killing occurs throughout the play. I would ┬árather be surprised than already be able to assume because of the dark nature seen in the movie. However, the lights used in the play creates a very dramatic and intriguing vibe. They are used very effectively to portray the different moods experienced throughout the play. For example, in the scene Macbeth tries to grab the floating dagger, the light used allows you to almost feel what it was like to not grab it. (Excuse the subtitles)


One of the best executed pieces of the movie was the music, which allowed me to connect very well to the actions. The best scene represented was that in which Macbeth is sitting on top of Duncan with the dagger in his hands and when Duncan awakes, he is greeted to multiple stabs from Macbeth which led to his death.


Something I’ve noticed throughout the many movies and TV series I’ve watched are that the music plays a key role! In this film, it is used very carefully to assure you can feel what the character is feeling through the different types and volumes of ┬ámusic heard. Another strength in the movie was definitely the clothing, I couldn’t find anything they could have changed, not one thing! If we were to go back to the 15th century, that is exactly how they would have dressed, period.

Actor “Jon Finch” who plays Macbeth in Roman Polanski’s film

Aside from the visuals and audio, there’s the actual acting piece which I thought was good, but nothing special. The actors in the movie do play their part appropriately but it seems like they’re playing it safe. I don’t feel like the actors took risks to achieve the standards of the play set by Shakespeare. The one flaw that stood out to me were the killing and fighting scenes, they just didn’t seem realistic. But, something that could have made or broken the play was in regards to the lines and what was said and what was taken out. From what I saw and heard, Polanski edited the lines to a T, meaning they were perfect and flowed very nicely with the action in the movie. In regards to the pacing, I thought some of the scenes happened way too slow! the main one being the death of Macbeth and how long the fight between him and Macduff took before his tragic death which gave Scotland as a country, new life and a new leader. To conclude, in overall examination of Polanski’s big picture I would say he did an excellent job at capturing the tragedy of Macbeth and if I were being picky I would suggest some minor changes, one being the acting of Lady Macbeth and also making the play have a brighter setting to avoid giving away the end result. But, all and all, a great film by Roman Polanski.

Different Views of What we Once Knew

Macbeth Journal entry #1

1.) King Duncan – A very noble and trustworthy man. He sees Macbeth as a hero and crowns him Thane of Cawdor after the Rebel Thane was executed. In (I.v.14) King Duncan greets Macbeth as “Worthiest cousin”. This reveals he thinks of Macbeth as family, or blood related.

I disagree with the description because Duncan will soon find out Macbeth isn’t the man he reveals himself to be. I also disagree because Duncan is king, many people would love to be king. For example, Macbeth may be motivated to become King after receiving higher status because nobody would suspect him as the murderer.

2.) Other Thanes – They see him as the new kid in school. For example, Macbeth is new to the title given to him therefore they see Macbeth as very unacknowledged. This also has to do with the fact they don’t really know him. In (I.iii.135-136) the Thanes notice Macbeth’s distraught state but Banquo saves the day and tells them it is just Macbeth’s unfamiliarity with the title.

I agree with the Thanes opinion because they aren’t all just greeting Macbeth and becoming best friends right away like King Duncan. They are analyzing him and trying to figure out what kind of person he is. This is a proper approach to meeting new people because in the end, you may just get stabbed in the back.

3.) Lady Macbeth – She sees Macbeth as very weak and unwilling because of his soft nature. This is seen when she brings up her wish, which is for Macbeth to kill her husband, King Duncan. In (I.iv.17-18) Lady Macbeth says “It is too full O’ Th’ milk of human kindness to catch the nearest way.” This refers to Macbeth in which she thinks he is too weak to grab the Scottish crown. Therefore, the nearest way is to murder King Duncan.

I disagree with Lady Macbeth’s opinion because it is a lot easier to call someone else soft when you aren’t the one doing it. Macbeth has just been named Thane of Cawdor and now the Kings wife is planning for him to already to kill her husband. That’s a lot to take in if you’re him and I don’t think her judgement is fair.

4.) Macbeth – He is very humble at the beginning of the play and understands his role among the people. But as soon as he gets the prophecy from the three witches his mind is drowned in constant thought and confusion. Then, once Lady Macbeth speaks with him of her plans for him to murder her husband. That is when Macbeth starts to think about the situation and says to himself in (I.vii. 1-2) “If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well / It were done quickly”. He is saying that if everything could be over with as soon as Duncan is killed, then it would be best for Macbeth to kill him quickly.

I agree with this description because it is very accurate. After Macbeth gets the prophecy for his future from the witches he immediately changes, and not for the better. After the first prediction comes true he is now a strong believer that he will become king. But will he have the power to do what it takes to get the title…

5.) Nick Ciaglia – My own impressions of Macbeth are that he is a very good man and he knows his role among society and is happy with it. The only flaw he possesses is that he is very easily influenced , this could change everything in the story when the witches give him the prophecy of things to come.

Act 1, Scene 7 Soliloquies

This soliloquy adds to my understanding of Macbeth in a variety of ways. First, It seems as though Macbeth is starting to fathom the idea of killing Duncan. This is proven through line 7 where he says “We’d jump the life to come.” This means he would risk the chance of any life after death to kill Duncan. He also gets mad at King Duncan in line 17 “Hath borne his faculties so meek” This refers to Duncan as using his royal powers so modestly. This doesn’t alter my opinion on Macbeth because he is now starting to think more and more about killing Duncan. This is because of the ambition Lady Macbeth possess’ and the fact his reign as king was predicted by the three witches. This doesn’t surprise me because of how easily turned Macbeth is as a character. He states in line 4-5 “That but this blow might be the be-all and the end-all…” This line broken down means all that is needed to end everything. By killing King Duncan, complete chaos will arise and cause the death of many in the future on Macbeth’s quest to be King.