Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Macbeth essay assignment

Jill Beiermeister
Accel English 12
Mr. BG
January 18, 2012

Part 1:

A) “Look like th’ innocent flower but be like the serpent under t’.”-Lady Macbeth (1.5.60)

B) I believe that this quote fully portrays the theme of “things aren’t always what they seem.” Lady Macbeth is clearly telling her husband to act innocent while being as evil as possible. Because Macbeth was so soft, Lady Macbeth dominated him and managed to get him to do whatever she wanted- to kill Duncan and become king. This quote, said by Lady Macbeth, is one of many that show who her character is. She is far more ambitious than her husband. From the very beginning of the play to the end, it was obvious that she wanted power and would do anything she needed to in order to get it. She was so determined that she even made her husband evil even though he was not that type of person.

C) Macbeth is a very weird and almost scary story, and there needs to be certain effects and camera angles in order to show that. At this particular scene, Lady Macbeth and her husband are standing in a dark kitchen. They are very close to one another and the camera angle was from below, perhaps to show the danger and evil side of the two characters. You can hear a soft, eerie music that gives the viewer a tense feel about the scene and was non-diegetic.This means that the sound is not heard by the characters but is designed for the audience reaction only. Also, the shot is a close up of the two. I think the reason for this was for the viewers to really get into the movie and feel as though they are there. Because I had already read the play, I pictured the scene in my head and it was portrayed exactly as I had imagined.

D) I think that Lady Macbeth is a character who would never give up for anything. She was willing to go as far as murdering someone in order so she can have all the power. Her tone of voice and her piercing eyes really shows the evil and strong side of her. Actually visualizing the scene instead of just reading from the book, I had much more knowledge of how powerful Lady Macbeth truly was.

Part 2:

A) “The castle of Macduff, I will surprise, siez upon fife, give to the edge o’ th’ sword. His wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls that trace him in his line.”- Macbeth (4.1.165)

B) This quote shows the theme of “power corrupts.” As said previously, Macbeth was a very “soft” character originally. If he didn't have Lady Macbeth as his wife, he would not have murdered the king in order to get power. However, after Macbeth realized that he actually could take the position of being king, and get away with it, he wanted the power just as his wife did. And he went as far as murdering someone to get it. Macbeth is known as a tragic hero.  He possessed pride and greatness, as well as greed and evil. He went after something and continued to go after it until he received it.  His ambition is never satisfied. He always wants more than he already has. Macbeth sacrifices his reputation, relationships and even his life, just to have power. His ambition leads to his death by Banquo.

C) During this scene, Macbeth was staring straight at the camera, with a close up shot on mostly just his shoulders, up. He was speaking in a slow manner and was very serious while saying the quote. The light was shown only on his face and the rest of the scene was dark surrounding him. Having him being the only character made the audience point our attention to exactly what he was saying and it also made him seem much more powerful and evil than he was at the beginning of the play. When he says, “his wife, his babes”, his eyes get squinty and he starts speaking even slower which shows the danger he has and how serious he is about murdering Macduff.

D) Seeing this portion of the play in action made it seem much more realistic rather than just reading it from the book. The camera angle along with the lighting made me really focus my attention to the film and what Macbeth was trying to tell the audience. After I heard Macbeth say this quote, I understood how much evil he had inside of him and just how determined he is to get all of the power he is capable of getting.   

Part 3:

A) Be bloody, bold, and resolute, for none of women born shall harm Macbeth.”-Second Apparition (4.2.86)

B) Although it is small, this quote has a lot to do with the play and has a lot of affect towards Macbeth. This apparition said by the witches, is saying that no man that is born from a woman can harm Macbeth. Macbeth knows that everyone is born from a woman so therefore, he believes that the witches are telling the truth. This shows that Macbeth’s character is a little weak because he believes everything that the witches are telling him. However, as Macbeth did not know, Macduff was born through a cesarean section and not by a natural birth. This tells us that Macbeth’s character is gullible because he right away believes everything that the three witches are telling him. This statement that the witches say can be an example of the theme, “superstition affects human behavior” because of the misjudgment of Macbeth.

C) This scene in the film can definitely be described as intense and frightening. There is scary music in the background and the characters portrayed are the three witches and Macbeth. They are in an operating-looking room that has very bright lighting and there are bodies on operating beds. This whole scene looks as though it came right out of a horror movie. The camera is not steady which gives the audience a sense of fright as well as eeriness. The camera was shown mostly on the three witches along with the dead bodies also in the scene. I felt almost scared watching it and this was for sure a very powerful and intense scene.

D) I enjoyed watching this scene in the movie rather than reading it in the play. I wasn’t expecting it to be as intense as it was but it helped me understand the characters of the witches and how tricky they were. I may not have gotten a better understanding of the quote itself; however, I did manage to get a better feel for the characters of the three witches.

Part 4:

A) “Blood will have blood.”-Macbeth (3.4.144)

B) This quote is when Macbeth realizes that he has killed King Duncan. Basically, someone was killed (King Duncan), and someone else (Macbeth) will be killed in retaliation. Macbeth is starting to become afraid of what he has done and feels guilty towards his actions. When he sees Banquo’s ghost on top of the dining table he becomes very afraid. He has realized that blind ambition leads to one’s down fall. Macbeth was so corrupted by power and by his wife that he didn’t think of the consequences that would come upon him in the future. He was both ignorant and selfish and starts to weaken as a character.

C) This scene was very unexpected because everyone was dancing around and then all of a sudden, Banquo’s ghost comes out of nowhere on top of the dining table. Macbeth starts screaming, showing his fear and his voice gets very loud. The room they are in has a lot of lighting, in order for the audience to understand how Macbeth is feeling at this point. The high angle on Macbeth makes him look smaller than normal, giving him the appearance of being weak, powerless, and trapped. He is deathly afraid of the ghost of Banquo, which is why Banquo’s ghost is standing on a table to give him a threatening position compared to Macbeth.

D) I thought that this scene was done very well in the film. Macbeth seemed to finally realize the ever so common, “eye for an eye” quote. He is very powerless in this scene which is not like him. I got a much better understanding of the quote when I got to visualize it.


  1. 2)I had also chosen Macbeth as a character to quote. You said something about Macbeth that I had also said about him in my essay. You said that he was not thinking of any consequences other than gaining power. I also believe this true about Macbeth. With his blind ambition it begins to lead to his downfall.
    3)“Be bloody, bold, and resolute, for none of women born shall harm Macbeth.”-Second Apparition (4.2.86)I really like this quote because I think that it is an important piece of information to Macbeth. With this knowledge, Macbeth believes he is not in harms way, until he finds out that Macduff's mother had a c-section.
    4)I think that the quote "blood will have blood" was most effectively shot because you could really convey the fright that Macbeth had. The audience just gave it a feel like Macbeth was crazy and that his powers was beginning to fall. His character was becoming weak. -Nicole Kelly

  2. 2. Jill and i both chose to choose quotes from the same character and are analysis of the certain character (Macbeth) were very similar in several way and didn't really differ at all in any way. We both described him as changing from who he was in the beginning of the play, being the kind sweet hearted man he was, and changing into a power hungry character that will do whatever it takes to become king.
    3. My favorite quote was “Look like th’ innocent flower but be like the serpent under t’.”-Lady Macbeth (1.5.60.). For this quote, Lady Macbeth is telling Macbeth that doing an evil deed can also be innocent. I liked this quote because this quote never really stood out to me but after reading Jill's analysis of it, it made more sense to me and realize that it really does play a role in the play.
    4. The quote “The castle of Macduff, I will surprise, siez upon fife, give to the edge o’ th’ sword. His wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls that trace him in his line.”- Macbeth (4.1.165) was portrayed most effectively in the movie. What made me think that this quote was most effective was how they set up the scene in the movie where it was only Macbeth and he was talking to himself, but the shot was a close up really showing his seriousness and how power corrupt he has truly become because he doesnt have a problem saying this quote, when in reality, he would have as the person he was before killing King Duncan.

  3. 1. “Look like th’ innocent flower but be like the serpent under’ t’.”-Lady Macbeth (1.5.60)
    Both Jill and i used this quote. While Jill may have worded what the quote means differently than i would have, the structure is the same. Macbeth was a kind goodhearted war hero whom had a wife with a heart that pumped gold instead of blood, the only thing she cared about was getting money and having the biggest castle and being royalty. She didn't care how they got there and she tells Macbeth to be his normal, honorable self while at the same time, lie through your teeth and go against your king only to better his own life. Our observations were similar in the way that we both saw how lady Macbeth was the true evil that was buried inside Macbeth and she pushed him to do things that he normally wouldn't have done.
    3. The quote that Jill and i both responded too was also my favorite out of all of Jills chosen quotes. As stated above this quote is showing Macbeths true fear as his wife convinces him that killing king Duncan is the right thing to do even though he is an honored leader. Macbeth realizes at first that he cannot go through with it but his wife tells him to be his normal self but at the same time, lie and do something that could potentially have both of them hanged if they were to be caught.
    4. “Be bloody, bold, and resolute, for none of women born shall harm Macbeth.”-Second Apparition (4.2.86)
    This is the quote from Jill that i think was best portrayed in the film. The panning of the weird sisters and the way they moved them selves about the room helped to strike fear into the audience and Macbeth as we saw how Macbeth believed there lies. The way the curtains in the room sometimes blocked the shot of the sisters helped us to visualize the enclosure and helped to make us feel strained or seems Macbeth felt the same as the spirits spoke to him and told him his future.

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