The Merchant of Venice is a play written in 1796 by William Shakespeare (!). Though it was included in the Comedies category of Shakespeare’s First Folio, there are some dramatic scenes that might make us doubt of this labelization. A cinematographic adaptation directed by Michael Radford was released in 2004 (IMDB). Set in 16th century Venice, the play tells the lovestory of Bassanio –performed in the film by Joseph Fiennes- and Portia (Lynn Collins), but also relates the conflict that emerges between Antonio (Jeremy Irons) and Al Pacino’s Shylock (IMDB). In order to win the heart of Portia, Bassanio needs a certain amount of money. He resorts to Antonio, his friend and a wealthy merchant, who actually does not have enough money at his disposal. This is the reason why they turn to a Jewish moneylender: Shylock. The Jew is willing to lend them the necessary quantity only on one condition: if he is not payed back in time, Antonio will let him take one pound of his flesh. Having signed the contract, Bassanio departs for Belmont, where the beautiful, rich Portia resides. One of the turning points of the story happens when Antonio’s ships are reported lost at sea, so he fails to pay off his obligation to Shylock. In the court of the Duke of Venice, the Jew demands Antonio’s flesh, even when Bassanio offers him twice the amount of the loan. Thanks to the witty Portia, who appears dressed as a male lawyer, there is another complete turnabout in the situation. The Jew must take the money and convert to Christianity.