Synopsis: Hamlet, son of the king of Denmark, is summoned home for his father's funeral and his mother's wedding to his uncle. In a supernatural episode, he discovers that his uncle, whom he hates anyway, murdered his father. In an incredibly convoluted plot--the most complicated and most interesting in all literature--he manages to (impossible to put this in exact order) feign (or perhaps not to feign) madness, murder the "prime minister," love and then unlove an innocent whom he drives to madness, plot and then unplot against the uncle, direct a play within a play, successfully conspire against the lives of two well-meaning friends, and finally take his revenge on the uncle, but only at the cost of almost every life on stage, including his own and his mother's.
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Kenneth Branagh
Production: Sony Pictures Classics
  Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 9 wins & 20 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
242 min






-Who's there?

-Nay, answer me. Stand and unfold yourself.

Long live the king?



You come most carefully upon your hour.

'Tis now struck 12.

Get thee to bed, Francisco.

For this relief much thanks.

'Tis bitter cold,

and I am sick at heart.

-Have you had quiet guard?

-Not a mouse stirring.

Well, good night.

If you do meet Horatio and Marcellus,

the rivals of my watch, bid them make haste.


I think I hear them. Stand! Who's there?

Friends to this ground.

And liegemen to the Dane.

Give you good night.

Farewell, honest soldier.

Who hath relieved you?

Barnardo has my place.

Give you good night.

-Holla, Barnardo.

Say what, is Horatio there?

A piece of him.

Welcome, Horatio.

Welcome, good Marcellus.

-What, has this thing appeared again?

-I have seen nothing.

Horatio says 'tis but our fantasy,

and will not let belief take hold of him...

...touching this dreaded sight

twice seen of us.

Therefore I have entreated him along

with us to watch the minutes of this night...

...that if again this apparition come

he may approve our eyes and speak to it.

Tush, tush, 'twill not appear.

Sit down a while,

and let us once again assail your ears...

...that are so fortified against our story,

what we two nights have seen.

Well, sit we down,

and let us hear Barnardo speak of this.

Last night of all...

...when yond same star

that's westward from the pole...

...had made his course t'illume

that part of heaven...

...where now it burns...

...Marcellus and myself,

the bell then beating 1 --

Peace, break thee off.

Look where it comes again.


-Same figure as the king that's dead.

Thou art a scholar. Speak to it.


Looks it not like the king?

-Mark it.

-Most like.

It harrows me with fear and wonder.

-It would be spoke to.

-Speak to it, Horatio.

What art thou

that usurp'st this time of night...

...together with that fair

and warlike form...

...in which the majesty of buried Denmark

did sometimes march?

By heaven, I charge thee speak.

It is offended.

See, it stalks away.


Stay, speak, speak, I charge thee speak.


'Tis gone, and will not answer.

How now, Horatio?

You tremble and look pale.

Is not this something more than fantasy?

What think you on't?

Before my God, I might not this believe...

...without the sensible and true avouch

of mine own eyes.

-Is it not like the king?

-As thou art to thyself.

Such was the very armor he had on

when he th' ambitious Norway combated.

So frowned he once

when in an angry parle...

...he smote the sledded Polacks

on the ice.

'Tis strange.

Thus twice before,

and jump at this dead hour...

...with martial stalk

hath he gone by our watch.

In what particular thought to work

I know not...

...but in the gross and scope

of my opinion...

...this bodes some strange eruption

to our state.

Good now, look here,

and tell me, he that knows...

...why this same strict

and most observant watch...

...so nightly toils

the subject of the land...

...and why such daily cast

of brazen cannon...

...and foreign mart

for implements of war...

...why such impress of shipwrights,

whose sore task...

...does not divide the Sunday

from the week:

What might be toward

that this sweaty haste...

...doth make the night joint-laborer

with the day...

...who is't that can inform me?


That can I.

At least the whisper goes so:

Our last king...

...whose image

Rate this script:(3.67 / 3 votes)

Kenneth Branagh

Sir Kenneth Charles Branagh (; born 10 December 1960) is a British actor, director, producer, and screenwriter from Belfast in Northern Ireland. Branagh trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, and in 2015 succeeded Richard Attenborough as its president. He has directed or starred in several film adaptations of William Shakespeare's plays, including Henry V (1989) (for which he was nominated for the Academy Awards for Best Actor and Best Director), Much Ado About Nothing (1993), Othello (1995), Hamlet (1996) (for which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay), Love's Labour's Lost (2000), and As You Like It (2006). Branagh has also starred in numerous other films and television series including Fortunes of War (1987), Woody Allen's Celebrity (1998), Wild Wild West (1999), The Road to El Dorado (2000), Conspiracy (2001), Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002), Warm Springs (2005), as Major General Henning von Tresckow in Valkyrie (2008), The Boat That Rocked (2009), Wallander (2008–2016), My Week with Marilyn (2011) as Sir Laurence Olivier (Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor), and as Royal Navy Commander Bolton in the action-thriller Dunkirk (2017). He has directed such notable films as Dead Again (1991), in which he also starred, Swan Song (1992) (Academy Award nominated for Best Live Action Short Film), Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1994) in which he also starred, The Magic Flute (2006), Sleuth (2007), the blockbuster superhero film Thor (2011), the action thriller Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (2014) in which he also co-stars, the live-action remake of Disney's Cinderella (2015), and the mystery drama adaptation of Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express (2017), in which he also starred as Hercule Poirot. He also narrated the BBC documentary miniseries Walking with Dinosaurs (starred in 1999) (as well as The Ballad of Big Al), Walking with Beasts (2001) and Walking with Monsters (2005). Branagh has been nominated for five Academy Awards, five Golden Globes, and has won three BAFTAs, and an Emmy. He was appointed a knight bachelor in the 2012 Birthday Honours and was knighted on 9 November 2012. He was made a Freeman of his native city of Belfast in January 2018. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Hamlet" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 4 Dec. 2021. <https://www.scripts.com/script/hamlet_9520>.

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