Starring: Ralph Fiennes, Gerard Butler, Brian Cox, Vanessa Redgrave, Jessica Chastain.
Director: Ralph Fiennes
Ralph Fiennes is one of the best British actors working in Hollywood at the moment and now he has taken all of that experience behind the camera as he makes his directorial debut with Coriolanus.
The movie is a modern day re-telling of the William Shakespeare play that sees Fiennes direct as well as star.
Caius Martius 'Coriolanus' (Ralph Fiennes), a revered and feared Roman General is at odds with the city of Rome and his fellow citizens.
Pushed by his controlling and ambitious mother Volumnia (Vanessa Redgrave) to seek the exalted and powerful position of Consul, he is loath to ingratiate himself with the masses whose votes he needs in order to secure the office.
When the public refuses to support him, Coriolanus's anger prompts a riot that culminates in his expulsion from Rome. The banished hero then allies himself with his sworn enemy Tullus Aufidius (Gerard Butler) to take his revenge on the city.
It's hard to believe that this is Fiennes directorial debut has he has delivered quite a savage and dark movie that really brings Shakespeare's play to life.
This is a gripping modern drama that packs a real punch from start to finish that looks at power and class and war.
However what I will say mixing a modern day story with the old language of the play doesn't really work for me and I think that this movie would have reached a wider audience had they also used modern day language.
While there is no doubt a poetry to the language I just wonder how appealing it is to a wider audience who are perhaps not very familiar with this story.
But it is a tour de force performance from Fiennes who play a man who is happy to fight for his country but doesn't want to mingle with the masses.
He is a man who is consumed by pride and driven by his mother to gain status and social standing, this is what proves to be his downfall.
But the opening scenes with Fiennes is battle are totally fantastic and really bring this Shakespeare tale to life.
There is also a fine performance from both Vanessa Redgrave, who transports her skill on stage to the screen in this role, and Gerard Butler in what is a very different role for the actor.
Coriolanus is an intelligent and hard hitting movie that has moved the story into the 21st Century whilst holding tight to the core values of the original.
Fiennes has delivered a very visual and visceral movie that just looks fantastic from start to finish - the war scenes at the beginning of the film are a particular highlight.
Coriolanus is a movie that really does captivate but I fear that the dated language may be a problem for some.
Coriolanus is out on DVD & Blu-Ray now
FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw