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    Julius Caesar

    After all, Shakespeare never aimed his plays at the classroom. Himself an actor, he meant them to be acted. And what an array of fine performances marks M-G-M’s superb version of “Julius Caesar.” Among the conspirators who plot a dictator’s death, James Mason as Brutus and John Gielgud as Cassius stand out. Marlon Brando as Mark Antony runs them a close race, however, and Edmond O’Brien’s surprisingly effective in a small role. But Louis Calhern’s Caesar is a bit too much the tired businessman. It’s a man’s story; Deborah Kerr and Greer Garson are shadowy figures, on the edge of the violent events. Under Joseph Mankiewicz’ taut direction, the deep thoughtfulness of the lines comes through, reflecting emotions and problems of power and responsibility that affect our lives today. High-school English was never like this!



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