Marat/Sade (film)  

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The Death of Marat (1793) by Jacques-Louis David
The Death of Marat (1793) by Jacques-Louis David

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The Persecution and Assassination of Jean-Paul Marat as Performed by the Inmates of the Asylum of Charenton Under the Direction of the Marquis de Sade, usually shortened to Marat/Sade, is a 1967 British film adaptation of Peter Weiss' play Marat/Sade. The screen adaptation is directed by Peter Brook, and originated in his theatre production for the Royal Shakespeare Company. The English version was written by Adrian Mitchell from a translation by Geoffrey Skelton.

The cast included Ian Richardson, Patrick Magee, Glenda Jackson, Clifford Rose, and Freddie Jones. It was filmed at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire and released by United Artists on 22 February 1967 in the United States, and 8 March 1967 in the United Kingdom. The film's score comprised Richard Peaslee's compositions. David Watkin was the cinematographer. The film uses the full title in the opening credits, though most of the publicity materials use the shortened form.



In the Charenton Asylum in 1808, the Marquis de Sade stages a play about the murder of Jean-Paul Marat by Charlotte Corday, using his fellow inmates as actors. The director of the hospital, Monsieur Coulmier, supervises the performance, accompanied by his wife and daughter. Coulmier, who supports Napoleon's government, believes that the play will support his own bourgeois ideas, and denounce those of the French Revolution that Marat helped lead. His patients, however, have other ideas, and they make a habit of speaking lines he had attempted to suppress, or deviating entirely into personal opinion. The Marquis himself, meanwhile, subtly manipulates both the players and the audience to create an atmosphere of chaos and nihilism that ultimately brings on an orgy of destruction.



Film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported an approval rating of 92%, based on Template:Nowrap, with an average rating of 7.96/10.

Roger Ebert wrote, "The actors are superb. When we first see the Marquis (Patrick Magee), he looks steadily into the camera for half a minute and the full terror of his perversion becomes clearer than any dialog can make it. Glenda Jackson, as Marat's assassin Charlotte Corday, weaves back and forth between the melancholy of her mental illness and the fire of the role she plays. Ian Richardson, as Marat, still advocates violence and revolution even though thousands have died and nothing has been accomplished."

Film critic Leonard Maltin awarded the film 4 out of a possible 4 stars, calling the film "chilling", praising the film's atmosphere as being " vivid that it seems actors are breathing down your neck".


Brook shared the Nastro d'Argento for Best Director of a Foreign Film with Robert Bresson, who was honored for Mouchette, and received Special Mention at the Locarno International Film Festival.

See also

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Marat/Sade (film)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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