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O Video

O on Video - 2008


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When you compare O to William Shakespeare's Othello, you'll realize just how well this modern adaptation really works. Shakespeare's tragedy transfers nicely to the film's contemporary private school setting, where Othello is now Odin (Mekhi Phifer), star of the basketball team and the school's only African American student. Desdemona is Desi (Julia Stiles), the dean's daughter and Odin's girlfriend, and Iago is Hugo (Josh Hartnett), the coach's steroid-shooting son, who jealously plants seeds of doubt that fester in Odin's mind, leading them all to a tragically violent fate. As directed by Tim Blake Nelson (who played the dimwit Delmar in O Brother, Where Art Thou?), this is a clever and serious interpretation of Shakespeare that, sadly, was shelved for two years when its distributor balked at potential comparisons to the Columbine massacre. Such fears were pointless; this well-acted film delivers an anti-violence message that younger viewers will readily appreciate. (Source: Jeff Shannon for

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Mekhi Phifer

Julia Stiles

Josh Hartnett

Andrew Keegan

Rain Phoenix

Studio: Lions Gate Films

Filmed: 2008 - Released: 2008

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