The joint is out of time

10th March 1995 at 00:00
Ralph Fiennes makes a romantic, febrile Dane in Jonathan Kent's much-hyped production of Hamlet at the Hackney Empire.

Played in Edwardian dress against towering doors and shutters, shafts of light streaming in the gloom, this is a production which has a period feel in keeping with its Victorian surroundings.

Fiennes sets a hurtling pace, rattling through "To be or not to be . . ." in Ophelia's presence and hastily setting chairs for the audience of the play-within-the-play while giving his famous acting hints. His is a Hamlet which will not disappoint the fans, although the screen charisma is less in evidence at a distance.

Among the supporting cast, Peter Eyre is a Polonius at once bumbling and politically astute and Francesca Annis adds much-needed tension with her sexually spirited Gertrude.

To March 30. Running time 3hours 10 minutes. Tickets: 0171 312 1995.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today