The tragedy of Macbeth is a tale as old as time... or at least it feels like it, considering the million-and-one adaptations we've seen of Shakespeare's 1606 stage play.
You probably know how it goes, but let's recap anyway: a brave Scottish general named Macbeth encounters a trio of witches ("double, double toil and trouble") who prophecy that he will one day become the King of Scotland. Consumed by his growing ambition and greed, and thanks to his wife's not-so-gentle nudging, Macbeth comes to murder King Duncan and claim the throne for himself. Forced to commit one murder after another to protect his standing and eschew suspicion, the new king becomes a tyrant, leading to a civil war. The blood shed, guilt and paranoia push Macbeth and Lady Macbeth into the depths of madness.
Now this latest adaptation, which casts Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand as the murderous power (-hungry) couple, adapts the classic into an inky black and white film from Joel Coen – following in Lana Wachowski's footsteps, The Tragedy of Macbeth marks the first time that one of the Coen brothers has directed without the other's involvement.
It's very much giving us Robert Eggers' The Lighthouse energy – and no, we're not just saying that because it's in black and white and from A24 – in the best possible way. The teaser shows off some darkly striking cinematography from Bruno Delbonnel, which looks gorgeous and haunting in equal measure.
We also catch glimpses of some of the main cast, including Washington, McDormand, Brendan Gleeson as King Duncan, Harry Melling as Malcolm, and Kathryn Hunter as the witches. Not shown but definitely cast are also Corey Hawkins as Macduff, Moses Ingram as Lady Macduff, Ralph Ineson as the Captain, and Sean Patrick Thomas as Monteith.
The Tragedy of Macbeth comes to select theatres on December 25th, and Apple TV+ on January 14, 2022. It will also close the BFI London Film Festival 2021. Check out the teaser: