Shakespeare Plays Available in Video Format
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All’s Well That Ends Well
Antony and Cleopatra
As You Like It
The Comedy of Errors
Coriolanus
Cymbeline
Hamlet
Henry IV, part 1
Henry IV, part 2
Henry V
Henry VI, part 1
Henry VI, part 2
Henry VI, part 3
Henry VIII
Julius Caesar
King John
King Lear
Love’s Labour’s Lost
Macbeth
Measure for Measure
The Merchant of Venice
The Merry Wives of Windsor
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Much Ado About Nothing
Othello
Pericles
Richard II
Richard III
Romeo and Juliet
The Taming of the Shrew
The Tempest
Timon of Athens
Titus Andronicus
Troilus and Cressida
Twelfth Night
Two Gentlemen of Verona
The Winter’s Tale
Shakespeareana

Available versions

1960: Michael Hayes

1983: Jane Howell


Henry VI, Part 2

Henry IV, Part 2, picks up some of the themes that are later managed with more dexterity in Richard II (which, while earlier in historical chronology, is a much later product). In particular, Henry’s inability to rein in the divisions of his nobles — the same issue that drove a wedge into Richard’s kingship between Mowbray and Bolingbroke — brings on wave after wave of civil chaos. It climaxes in the opening battle of the Wars of the Roses, namely the First Battle of St. Albans.

Despite its chaos and ill-defined conclusion, this is often seen as the best part of the trilogy of Henry VI plays. For all that, it is occasionally tedious, and doesn’t offer the best of Shakespeare’s verse.

Productions of all the Henry VI plays are relatively scarce, and usually only produced by companies that are doing a larger sequence of plays; accordingly there are but few to watch and compare, but there are a few.