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In 16th century Venice, in order to win a woman's heart, Bassanio is forced to make a deadly deal with pitiless moneylender Shylock (Al Pacino). Bassanio will get his money, and without paying interest. If he doesn't pay it back, however, he will owe Shylock a pound of his flesh.
A richly cinematic and robust rendition of Shakespeare's pre-political correctness play about the place of Jews in anti-Semitic 16th century Venice, Michael Radford's film takes delight in dramatics thus pulling us into the story.