The Merry Wives of Windsor – BBC Shakespeare Collection [1982] [DVD]

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In 1978, the BBC set itself the task of filming all of William Shakespeare’s plays for television. The resulting productions, renowned for their loyalty to the text, utilised the best theatrical and television directors and brought great performances from leading contemporary actors.

Amon the honest folk of Windsor, interloper Sir Jahn Falstaff stands out as a rogue, a chancer and an oaf. More concerned with his lack of money, the aeing overwieght Falstaff hatches a plan to court two wealthy married women. Mistress Ford an Mistress Page. When the two wives get together they devise their own paln to teach the knight a lesson…

Shakespeare’s boisterous comedy of love and money was supposedly written because Queen Elizabeth wanted to see Falstaff in love. One of the great Shakespearian characters, Falstaff played here with great gusto by Richard Griffiths, is merciessly taunted by Judy Davis and Prunella Scales as the wives.

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The Merry Wives of Windsor – BBC Shakespeare Collection [1982] [DVD]