The Beggar's Opera

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Laurence Olivier

We are based in South London near Croydon, UK, and if preferred this item can be picked up by appointment. Just e-mail here. I also welcome the old fashioned cheque as it is cheaper to process and all orders are sent off same day as cheque received.


Official Release

UK Release: 07/04/08
Catalogue Number: OPTD1191
Certificate: U

Laurence Olivier, Stanley Holloway, Dorothy Tutin, Daphne Anderson, Hugh Griffith
Peter Brook

Set in the tawdry underbelly of 17th century London, a sordid world of bandits, cut throats and corrupted officials, The Beggar’s Opera follows the raffish escapades of Captain Macheath, a reckless, brooding, adventurer and notorious highwayman, and the seething plot to have him hanged.

This lively, colourful and imaginative adaptation of John Gay’s seminal, satirical opera masterpiece (which was the direct inspiration behind Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill’s Three Penny Opera) was the directorial debut of Peter Brook (who would later receive immense critical praise for his 1963 screen version of William Golding’s Lord Of The Flies) and is often cited as one of the first movie musicals in Cinema History. Starring the acting legend Laurence Olivier as the roguish, swashbuckling protagonist Macheath with Hugh Grifith (Mutiny On The Bounty) as The Beggar, Dorothy Tutin (The Shooting Party, Tale Of Two Cities, The Importance Of Being Earnest) as Polly Peachum and Stanley Holloway (Champagne Charlie, Passport To Pimlico, My Fair Lady) as Mr Lockit, The Beggar’s Opera also contains some consummate photography featuring some magnificently realised, Hogarth inspired set designs and a lively soundtrack conducted by Muir Matheson and arranged by Arthur Bliss who had previously worked on the score for H.G Wells The Shape Of Things To Come. Darkly comic, extremely entertaining and occasionally moving, The Beggars Opera remains a ground breaking representation of music in cinema.

  • Price: £15.99
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