Lady Macbeth

Synopsis: Rural England, 1865. Katherine is stifled by her loveless marriage to a bitter man twice her age, whose family are cold and unforgiving. When she embarks on a passionate affair with a young worker on her husband's estate, a force is unleashed inside her, so powerful that she will stop at nothing to get what she wants.
Genre: Drama, Romance
Director(s): William Oldroyd
Production: Roadside Attractions
  Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 18 wins & 39 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
89 min


Praise to the Lord

Who o'er all things

so wondrously reigneth

Shelters he under his wings

Yet so gently sustaineth

Hast thou not seen

How thy desires ever have been

Granted in what he ordaineth

(Humming the hymn)

Are you cold?


Are you nervous?


(Door opening)


Are you comfortable?

Yes. Yes, sir. Thank you.

- You're not cold?

- No.

- This house gets very cold.

- I'm thick-skinned.

You'll find that there can be a draught.

Won't be like what you're used to.

You ought to keep to the house.

But I don't mind the fresh air.

You'll be more comfortable

in the house.

I like the fresh air.

- I like being outside...

- Take it off.

Your nightdress, take it off.

(Wind howling)



(Men laughing and chatting)

(Clock chiming)

So you'll not go to London, then?


My son will stay here with his wife

and play master or something.


Excuse me.

Good night.

(Father-in-law) You're very tired

lately, Katherine.

You will wait up for your husband.

I am perhaps a little overtired, sir.

You will wait up, Katherine.

I will try, sir.

Sit with Mrs Lester,

see that she doesn't fall asleep.

I'm awake.

Stop staring, Anna.

- But Mr Lester said...

- I know what Mr Lester said

but I'm awake

so there's no need to stare at me.


(Door opening)

Stand up.



Stop smiling.

Take your nightdress off.

Face the wall.

(Unbuttoning his fly)

Face the wall!

(Husband masturbating)



'Where has my husband gone?'


- Away?

- That's what I said.

- To do what?

- Nothing for you to concern yourself with.

But I do concern myself.

There's been an explosion,

at the colliery at Amble.

An explosion?

- How did that happen?

- Yes, Katherine. An explosion.

I leave for London this morning.

You'll be on your own for a while.

Perhaps you will find

that your energy is restored

after a little of your own company,

and when your husband returns

you can resume your duties

with more rigour,


(Door closing)

(Carriage departing)

(Opens windows)

(Wind blowing)

(Wind howling)

(Clock chiming)


(Man shouting)

(Raised voices)

(Shouting and laughing)

(All fall silent)

- Just taking a break, ma'am.

- On my husband's time?

We'll get straight back to it.

(Choked sobbing)

We're weighing a pig, ma'am.

Weighing a sow, to be precise.

A sow?

- As you see.

- (Anna squeals)

Take her down.

I said, take her down!

Face the wall.

And stop smiling.

(Chains rattling)

May we turn around yet, ma'am?

How much would I weigh?

Would you like me to check?


You have wasted quite enough of

my husband's good time and money.

I shall be keeping an eye

on you gentlemen.


- Ma'am, if I can explain...

- What was his name?

The one that called you a pig,

what was his name?

- Sebastian, ma'am.

- Is he new?

Yes, ma'am.

He's the new groomsman.

Is there something else, Anna?

No, ma'am.


My boots, Anna.

- It's still cold out there.

- It's warm enough.

- Mr Lester said that you weren't to...

- Yes?

- It's going to rain today, ma'am.

- Good.

(Dog barking)

Are you lost?

House is in the other direction.

Mrs Lester!

(Thunder rumbling)

- Anna, it's too hot.

- Your skin's too cold.


It only feels too hot

because the cold's got into your bones.

If it feels too hot,

then it is too hot.

Anna, you're hurting me.


Anna, stop it!

What's wrong with you?

- Sorry, I...

- You've made my skin all red.

- You'll catch a fever, ma'am.

- It's just a bit of fresh air, Anna.

And there's no need for you

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Nikolai Leskov

Nikolai Semyonovich Leskov (Russian: Никола́й Семёнович Леско́в; 16 February [O.S. 4 February] 1831 – 5 March [O.S. 21 February] 1895) was a Russian novelist, short-story writer, playwright, and journalist, who also wrote under the pseudonym M. Stebnitsky. Praised for his unique writing style and innovative experiments in form, and held in high esteem by Leo Tolstoy, Anton Chekhov and Maxim Gorky among others, Leskov is credited with creating a comprehensive picture of contemporary Russian society using mostly short literary forms. His major works include Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk (1865) (which was later made into an opera by Shostakovich), The Cathedral Clergy (1872), The Enchanted Wanderer (1873), and The Tale of Cross-eyed Lefty from Tula and the Steel Flea (1881).Leskov received his formal education at the Oryol Lyceum. In 1847 Leskov joined the Oryol criminal court office, later transferring to Kiev, where he worked as a clerk, attended university lectures, mixed with local people, and took part in various student circles. In 1857 Leskov quit his job as a clerk and went to work for the private trading company Scott & Wilkins owned by Alexander Scott, his aunt's English husband. His literary career began in the early 1860s with the publication of his short story The Extinguished Flame (1862), and his novellas Musk-Ox (May 1863) and The Life of a Peasant Woman (September, 1863). His first novel No Way Out was published under the pseudonym M. Stebnitsky in 1864. From the mid-1860s to the mid-1880s Leskov published a wide range of works, including journalism, sketches, short stories, and novels. Leskov's major works, many of which continue to be published in modern versions, were written during this time. A number of his later works were banned because of their satirical treatment of the Russian Orthodox Church and its functionaries. Leskov died on 5 March 1895, aged 64, and was interred in the Volkovo Cemetery in Saint Petersburg, in the section reserved for literary figures. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Lady Macbeth" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 11 Apr. 2021. <>.

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