Julius Caesar (1953) 720p

Movie Poster
Julius Caesar (1953) - Movie Poster
Biography | Drama
Frame Rate:
23.976 fps
English 2.0  
Run Time:
120 min
IMDB Rating:
7.3 / 10 
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Directors: Joseph L. Mankiewicz [Director] ,

Movie Description:
Brutus, Cassius, and other high-ranking Romans murder Caesar, because they believe his ambition will lead to tyranny. The people of Rome are on their side until Antony, Caesar's right-hand man, makes a moving speech. The conspirators are driven from Rome, and two armies are formed: one side following the conspirators; the other, Antony. Antony has the superior force, and surrounds Brutus and Cassius, but they kill themselves to avoid capture.


  • Julius Caesar (1953) - Movie Scene 1
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  • Julius Caesar (1953) - Movie Scene 1

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Saucy knaves shall loathe it, highbred nobles shall love it, moderates betwixt

Released in 1953 and based on William Shakespeare's play, "Julius Caesar" chronicles the last days of Julius Caesar (Louis Calhern) in mid-March, 44 BC. John Gielgud plays Cassius, the leader of a group of high-ranking Romans who seek to assassinate Julius while James Mason appears as reluctant accomplice, Brutus. Marlon Brando plays Mark Antony, a sympathizer of Caesar who condemns the murder. Greer Garson and Deborah Kerr are stunning as Calpurnia and Portia respectively. Douglass Watson plays Octavius, Caesar's nephew.

Whether or not you'll like this B&W film depends on if you favor The Bard and iambic pentameter. If so, you'll probably love it; if not, you'll find it dreadfully dull. Those in the middle, like me, will certainly find things to appreciate, but will generally be bored by the proceedings. Brando is captivating as usual, particularly in his extended funeral speech to the citizens, but he has greater performances playing more interesting characters in better movies, like "The Young Lions" (1958), "One-Eyed Jacks" (1961), "Mutiny on the Bounty" (1962), "The Missouri Breaks" (1976) and "Apocalypse Now" (1979), to name a handful.

If you like this one I encourage you to also check out the 1970 version, which is the same movie with different actors. I prefer it because it's in color and is more modern with superior action sequences, like Caesar's brutal assassination and the climatic battle. Charlton Heston is just as effective as Brando in the same role, albeit in his unique manner. It's interesting comparing the two movies because each have their strong and weak points.

The film runs 120 minutes and was shot in Culver City, California (studio) and nearby Iverson Ranch & Bronson Caves, Los Angeles. It was directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz.


March 15, 44 B.C Day of Betrayal

Julius Caesar triumphant return to Rome after his army's latest victory over Pompey is warned by a foolish looking blind sooth-slayer that trouble abounds and is to strike him the very next day on the Ides-or middle-of March. Thinking him being mad Caesar attends a Senate meeting the next day that with also despite his wife Portia in having a strange vision sensing something terrible is going to happen to him and warning him not to go. Caesar in the Senate chambers ends up being murdered by members of the Roman Senate body with his good friend Cassius-the one with that lean and hungry look-striking the first and his good friend and second in command Brutus the fatal blow! Feeling that Caesar was getting a bit too big for his own good and soon to become declared by the people of Rome King or Emperor, which he in fact doesn't want,it was decided by to do him in- JFK assessing style-and frame some poor pasty-who is to be named later-in doing the evil deed. That's before a live and power hungry Caesar liquidated the Roman Senate together with Brutus & co. along with it.

At Caesar's funeral or grand end off Mark Antony who was aware of the treachery done to his friend Julius Caesar instead of praising his dead friend exposed those that murdered him Brutus Cassius and their fellow conspirators causing them to check out of town before they end up getting lynched by the outraged populace! With Mark Anthony taking command of the Roman legions and the late Caesar's adopted son Octavius-the original Mister October-as his #2 Man they defeat Brutus' rebel army by ambushing it at the battle of Titinius leaving it's leaders Brutus & Cassius in paying, for their crimes against the Roman Empire, with their lives. Which they in cowardly fashion instead of dying in battle or combat having their aides, instead of their enemies, run them through!

The best film version of William Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar" with the late Marlon Brando's performance of Mark Anthony completely blowing away the entire Academy Award caliber cast. Brando's performance was so electrifying that his co-star in the film James Mason as Brutus asked the films director Joseph L. Mankiewicz to tone it down in the fear it would overshadow his own as well as everyone else in the cast! It was the first time that Brando unlike in his previous bringing down the roof performance in "Streetcar named Desire" showed he can speak perfect English and not mumble-as if he forgot his words or lines-his way through which he was known for back then in the 1950's as well as even now.

Beware the Ides of March

Joseph L. Mankiewicz's 1953 film exploring the life and death of larger than life Julius Caesar wastes no time engaging the audience. With Louis Calhern in the titular role and Marlon Brando as his faithful friend Mark Antony, the film goes into great detail about what gets Caesar killed by associates of his, and even greater detail of the thirst for power after his death. Julius Caesar, the film, goes down a dark road proving Nietzsche's Will to Power lives within even the most trusted of our allies.

Caesar is enjoying more praise than ever when he returns to Rome after defeating Pompey. During a victory celebration Caesar attends with his most trusted allies Cassius (John Gielgud) and Brutus (James Mason) he is warned by a Soothsayer to beware the Ides of March. Caesar ignores the warning and goes about the celebration unknowing that conversations are taking place regarding his rise to power. They believe Caesar to be untrustworthy and think he will become a tyrant. Fueled by lies and anger, a plot is masterminded to murder Caesar. On the 15th day of March, Caesar prepares to go to the senate, his wife Calpurnia (Greer Garson) begs him not to go due to a vivid dream she had in which Caesar was murdered. Caesar scoffs and goes anyway, being warned by another Soothsayer along the way. Ignoring this second warning, Caesar makes his way to the senate where the conspirators circle him and begin to stab him one by one. Upon seeing his dear friend Brutus among the murderers, Caesar succumbs to his wounds and dies. Mark Antony (Marlon Brando), who was led away from Caesar on the fateful day under false pretenses, joins with Caesar's adopted son and successor, Octavius (Douglass Watson) to avenge his death. They achieve their goal with Cassius and Titinius (John Parrish) being killed in the war that ensues, leaving only Brutus left alive of the conspirators. Seeing death as inevitable, Brutus kills himself and is pardoned by Octavius as acting, in what he believed, to be the best course of action for Rome.

Audiences are immediately engaged in the film from the very beginning. A gripping speech in the opening scene catapults the audience to ancient Rome, bringing it alive through the production design mimicking Roman architecture and language. For one, Caesar dies at almost exactly halfway through the film. I personally love a movie that will throw the audience for a loop by killing off its main character. Of course, being familiar with the play Julius Caesar, I knew he would be killed, but I did not know he would be killed so early on, leaving half the film to deal with the aftermath of his murder. Likewise, Marlon Brando's Mark Antony was hardly in the first half of the movie; being a fan of Brando's I was initially disappointed about this, however, he more than makes up for his absence with a strong second act. The costumes and production designs were an absolute treat, recreating ancient Rome, and making me feel like I had gladiator sandals on. The film was more than deserving of the Oscar it received that year for Art Direction (encompassing set decoration). I am shocked however that it wasn't even nominated for a statuette in the Costume Design category. The ghost Caesar that haunted Brutus was a directorial feat considering the time in which the picture was filmed. Its looming presence agonized Brutus, leading him to believe that Caesar was not at rest. The film was a stunning achievement of its time and one that I recommend be enjoyed by all. Personally, I have a yearly tradition of watching this film every year on the Ides of March and it has yet to get old.
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