This article discusses different responses to Michael Radford’s 2004 screen rendition of
Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice. It examines selected newspaper reviews, as well
as academic papers that critique the filmic adaptation of Shakespeare’s play, taking
into account its representation of Shakespeare’s Jew. The article interrogates to what
extent the medium – theatre or cinema – affects the way the audience experiences the
work, especially when dealing with an issue as complex as antisemitism. In this manner,
Radford’s attempt to historicize the events in Merchant is viewed as a form of attenuating
the antisemitic elements in the play.