An Apple Books Classic edition.
Macbeth is one of Shakespeare’s darkest and most tragic works, a drama so steeped in legend that actors won’t even say its name for fear of bringing bad luck. The Bard’s shortest tragedy is a tale of murder, madness, and ambition full of iconic speeches. It’s been adapted countless times during its 400 years—and now director Joel Coen has created a bold and fierce Apple Original starring Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand.
The action begins when three witches predict the noble Macbeth will become king of Scotland. The story goes on to follow his bloody rise to power and his descent into madness. Touching on themes like unchecked ambition, the power of guilt, and the psychology of perception, this is one of the most riveting, action-packed literary classics in the world.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Man, Shakespeare invented everything. Teen-angst drama? Romeo and Juliet. Romantic comedy? As You Like It. Biopics? Any of the historical plays. And with Macbeth, Shakespeare invented the now-so-popular psychological thriller. As he returns home from battle, war hero Macbeth is accosted by three witches, who prophesize that he will someday become the king of Scotland. Spurred on by his wife (who’s thoroughly into the idea of being queen), Macbeth decides to speed up the process—and things do not turn out at all like he planned. The shortest of all of Shakespeare’s tragedies jumps right into murder, political intrigue, madness, and more murder. On top of that, it’s got fascinating characters and some of the Bard’s most vividly poetic dialogue (Macbeth’s “Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow” speech is absolutely heartbreaking.) The play’s overall mood of anxious creepiness would make Stephen King smile. If you think reading Shakespeare is like doing homework, think again.
Shakespeare's tragedy about the ill-fated thane of Cawdor is brought to life via this one-man interpretation from Alan Cumming. Motivated by his scheming wife, Macbeth lusts for and then takes power, which leads to regicide and his own undoing. Building upon his performance in the audio edition of A.J. Hartley and David Hewson's Macbeth: A Novel, Cumming executes a captivating solo performance of this classic play. With an authentic Scottish accent, Cumming ably embodies Lord Macbeth. He shifts from character to character seamlessly, capturing the tone, attitude, and emphasis of each, while providing an increasing intensity that conveys the reprehensible, irreparable nature of the title character's actions. In addition to embracing the various characters, Cumming's powerful performance even elevates the play's stage directions, which rather than feeling like crude interruptions to the dialogue slip in smoothly like the knife used to slay King Duncan.