Shakespeare in Love
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William Shakespeare (Joseph Fiennes) is on a cold streak. Not only is he writing for Philip Henslowe (Geoffrey Rush), owner of "The Rose," a theatre whose doors are about to be closed by sadistic creditors, but he's got a nasty case of writer's block. Shakespeare hasn't written a hit in years. In fact, he hasn't written much of anything recently. Thus, the Bard finds himself in quite a bind when Henslowe, desperate to stave off another round of hot-coals-to-feet application, stakes The Rose's solvency on Shakespeare's new comedy, "Romeo and Ethel, the… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 92%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"[An] inordinately clever, sprightly romantic comedy."
‑ Jami Bernard, New York Daily News
"A triumph of talent and style over silliness."
‑ John Hartl, Seattle Times
"This romantic farce has a talented cast and energy to spare, but somehow the ingredients don't burn as brightly as one would expect from such promising ingredients."
‑ David Sterritt, Christian Science Monitor
"Shakespeare in Love crackles with the in-jokey brilliance that we associate with the playwright Tom Stoppard.... And you don't have to be a Shakespeare scholar to appreciate this movie's wit and easygoing references to the entertainment world today."
‑ Ann Hornaday, Baltimore Sun
"Shakespeare in Love stands on its wonderful cast, its solid direction and very clever script."
‑ Francis Leach, ABC Radio (Australia)
"It restores to centrality of consciousness one of the great geniuses of our civilization. It makes us care for his greatness, for his passion, for his worth. In no uncertain terms, it tells us Willie Boy is still here."
‑ Stephen Hunter, Washington Post
"Hilarious, sexy, clever, playful and as initially teasing as it is ultimately satisfying."
‑ Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel
"Get thee to the nearest movie theater showing Shakespeare in Love, a delightful comedy that sparkles with wit, literary smarts, passionate romance and expert acting by a glossy, enthusiastic cast."
‑ Leah Rozen, People Magazine
"Sniping at what's already been celebrated as a major national triumph always looks not-quite-cricket, but Madden's film is transparently one of those things that the British Do So Well, and the Americans fund so handsomely."
‑ Jonathan Romney, Guardian
"Entertaining, witty and acutely funny, with the ability to appeal to more than Shakespeare buffs. But for real fans of the Bard, it's a glorious treat that's smart and humorous, with highly appealing performances all round."
‑ , Total Film
"Scene after scene engages us as cheerful groundlings, tosses us jokes, toys with our expectations, then sweeps away the boundaries between film and stage, comedy and tragedy so we're open to the power of language and the feelings behind it."
‑ Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal
"I just wish that the script wasn't so insistent on showing off. Shakespeare, even when he kowtowed to the peasants, knew when to quit."
‑ Paul Tatara,
"Taking the writing process behind Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet as its inspiration, John Madden's follow-up to Mrs Brown combines contemporary humour with a convincing 16th-century setting."
‑ Lorien Haynes, Radio Times
"The film is literate without being pretentious, bawdy without being gross and grounded in historical fact without being constricted by it."
‑ Todd Anthony, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
"A brilliant and witty script by Tom Stoppard is brought to life by a great cast."
‑ Scott Nash, Three Movie Buffs
More reviews for Shakespeare in Love on Rotten Tomatoes

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