In her adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Tempest, Academy Award®–nominated Julie Taymor (Across the Universe, Frida, Titus) brings a hugely original dynamic to the story by changing the sorcerer Prospero into the sorceress Prospera, brilliantly portrayed Helen Mirren (The Queen). Prospera’s journey spirals from vengeance to forgiveness as she reigns over a magical island, cares for her daughter, Miranda, and wields her power against enemies in this exciting, masterly mix of romance, tragicomedy and the supernatural.

It revolves around the magician Prospera as she orchestrates spirits, monsters, a grief-stricken king, a wise old councilor, two treacherous brothers and a storm at sea, bringing banishment, sorcery and shipwreck into the lives of two hapless lovers in order to stir and seal their fate.

Comedic elements merge expertly with the original text with Russell Brand, as Trinculo the jester, and Alfred Molina, as Stephano the boisterous butler. Renowned for her wonderfully inventive works for both stage and screen, director Julie Taymor has applied her considerable talents to give this journey of vengeance and self discovery a whole new resonance. As Prospera breaks her magical staff against an entrancing volcanic landscape at the end of her heroic quest, this poignant story of love and forgiveness translates into a riveting and filmic mystical tale for our own times.

Colm McAuliffe,
Jameson Dublin International Film Festival