Queen Victoria remains one of the most famous and iconic British monarchs, due in large part to the fact that she reigned for such a long time (1837-1901). Needless to say, Victoria has also been a popular icon in the movies, particularly her strong relationships with two men in her life,: her husband Prince Albert and her dear friend John Brown.
Starring a very young and beautiful Emily Blunt in the title role, "The Young Victoria" focuses on the tumultuous early years of the queen's reign, including her passionate (if stormy) courtship with Prince Albert, as well as her negotiating the treacherous waters of politics.
The film features some lavish costuming, and the storytelling manages to convey a sense of the political events of the time while also showing us Victoria's inner emotions. If you want to get a glimpse of Queen Victoria before she became the frumpish woman of her later life, then you should definitely watch this film.
While the previous film focused mainly on Victoria's early life, this TV movie shows the entire panoply of the relationship and marriage between these two high-spirited, independent monarchs. Through it all, however, we come to appreciate just how much Victoria and Albert loved one another, a love that allowed their relationship to weather many storms.
"Victoria and Albert" is both romantic and elegantly executed, giving us an insider's glimpse of the loving yet also very contentious royals who have gone down as one of the most famous couples in history. As a result, you will feel like you get to really know these two rulers, though they are separated from us by the yawning gulf of history.
As its title suggests, "Victoria the Great" takes a somewhat praising approach to the life of one of Britain's greatest monarchs. The film is sweeping in its scope, with all of the magnificence we have come to expect of movies from the 1930s.
This picture clearly intends us to see Victoria as one of the greatest monarchs in the history of Britain, but it is enjoyable nevertheless, allowing us a glimpse at one of the most fascinating leaders in history and the England over which she ruled. In addition, it shows us just how different filmmaking was in the 1930s.
"Mrs. Brown" shows us a much older, wearier Queen Victoria. The film takes up the point in her life when the aging queen was devastated at the death of her husband and, faced with such emotion, withdraws from public life. Into the gap steps a Scotsman named John Brown, who quickly becomes the queen's most devoted friend and confidante.
The inimitable Dame Judi Dench delivers an emotionally powerful performance as the aging queen. As a result, we find ourselves weeping as she realizes her foolishness in distancing herself from her friend. This emotional depth is what makes the film so compelling. If you aren't crying by the end of this movie, then you have clearly not been watching very closely.
As always, the personal relationships of the monarch are given priority in these lushly costumed dramas, showing us that kings and queens are just people like the rest of us. In the process, we learn about the often complex range of feelings these often inscrutable figures experience as they go about their daily lives.
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