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Kelsey's Review

Created Mar 13, 2008 09:49PM PST • Edited Mar 13, 2008 09:49PM PST

  1. Quality
  2. Very Good 3.5

    Elizabeth was a film that displayed Queen Elizabeth becoming the leader of England. This turned the England in to a Protestant nation, which caused great turmoil. The new Queen was threatened constantly living in a state of immense danger. So many people were conspiring and working against Elizabeth. She managed to keep her mind straight and prove that she was a worthy Queen. Nearly a decade later, the sequel, Elizabeth: The Golden Age, has been released. This works mostly because it takes place much later in Elizabeth’s reign. More so than time though, Elizabeth: the Golden Age, is a good sequel because it goes deeper in to Elizabeth’s life and what this period was like for England in response to the threat of Spain.
    King Phillip (Molla) of Spain makes it his mission to remove Queen Elizabeth of England from her thrown in disapproval of her Protestant denomination. He is convinced that Mary Stuart (Morton) should take her place. As Elizabeth is still not married this would return England to a Catholic state. Spain and even many Catholics in England conspire against her. Everyone trying to protect Elizabeth, advises her to fight back. She refuses to until someone attacks her first. She wants her people to be free even if they have different beliefs than her. Soon enough, Queen Elizabeth does get attacked. Someone shoots her, but she remains unharmed. The assassinator is captured as well as another guilty party, Mary. She has been writing letters to King Phillip that were intercepted. The most recent one had confirmed that she was committing treason against Elizabeth in hopes of becoming Queen herself. Elizabeth struggles with this at first, but she ends up authorizing her death sentence.
    Little did the English know, Mary’s death is just what the Spanish wanted. King Phillip knew that the letters were being read. He was just waiting until the moment when Mary would write something that would serve as evidence that could convict her of treason. This gave Spain a motive to go to war with England. Prior to this England was the only European nation that Spain hadn’t trapped in to the holy wars. Queen Elizabeth leads her country in to battle for the country’s safety free of Spain.

  3. Great 4.0

    Cate Blanchett gave a great performance as Queen Elizabeth, which has given her an Oscar nomination. She was nominated for her role in the original film as well. Blanchett was actually very hesitant about doing this film. However, she realized it was a chance to show another chapter of the life of Queen Elizabeth. It was a chance for her to explore something further. The director, Shekhar Kapur, has even said that he isn’t sure he would have wanted to make the film if Blanchett wouldn’t have been involved. She is really a wonderful actress and handles Elizabeth with such strength. Cate Blanchett has became Elizabeth especially with this second film. There proves to be many different sides to the character. With all of the death and danger that has surrounded Elizabeth she has been forced to become a more distant person. She doubts whether love is really attainable for her. Elizabeth was strong enough to stand on her one rather than marrying someone she didn’t love. Queen Elizabeth hasn’t been a normal person for quite some time. She is forced to become this way to give her whole body and soul in to her country. Queen Elizabeth always followed what she believed was best and in doing so helped bring England in to a state of peace and prosperity.
    Clive Owen did a fantastic job as the love interest in the film as Sir Walter Raleigh. He worked off of Cate Blanchett terrifically. Walter was a pirate who brought news of the new world to Elizabeth who had never been off of British soil before. This served as an interest to her upon the thought of something new. He was also able to be more truthful to her. Walter has a genuine sense to him that many of her admirers didn’t. The truth wasn’t twisted to base the love story of Elizabeth though. There was a triangle between the two of them and Elizabeth Throckmorton played wonderfully by Abbie Cornish, who was loyal to the Queen. There was a definite connection between her and Walter. They did end up marrying and forming a family together, keeping it a secret from Elizabeth until it discovered and exposed.
    Samantha Morton and Jordi Molla work together to show the conspiring characters of Mary Stuart and King Philip. Mary becomes this way because of her jealousy and desire to be someone important. Jordi Molla is so devious because he thinks his views are the only ones out there. He wants to conform everyone to being Catholic. Part of this is just his hunger for power. It is not enough for him to control Spain, he wants to have control of Europe as a whole. Elizabeth becomes a threat to this and really makes an example of him. King Phillip refers to Queen Elizabeth as the devil. He claims she is full of darkness and he possesses the light. There is representation in the film of the opposite though. King Phillip is constantly shown in darkness as he is plotting his evil plans. Elizabeth is shown in light colors, especially white representing her title of “The Virgin Queen” fighting good. Towards the end of the film, Elizabeth is in a stormy dark atmosphere and King Phillip is right by a candle light. His light goes out making everything completely dark, while Elizabeth is shown in light as the sun rises above her.

  4. Male Stars Great 4.0
  5. Female Stars Great 4.0
  6. Female Costars Great 4.0
  7. Male Costars Great 4.0
  8. Very Good 3.5

    The costume design of the film is the second category that Elizabeth: The Golden Age has received an Oscar nomination for. The clothes are extravagant and display the characters and the time period very well. The film sets and locations follow this as well. They display gothic architecture yet they do so with a feminine touch. It displays that this is Elizabeth’s land of glory. The structures are momentous and show that it is really something to protect. Elizabeth: The Golden Age is not as good as the original film. The film was darker and more about the transformation. As soon as she was Queen she had so much thrown at her. It was about how she dealt with this and how it effected her. The second film tells a different story but still deals with many of the same themes, it just doesn’t spark anything completely new from the first film. The wars of religion are still there, which is an issue that is present even today in our world just to a lesser extent. Envy, betrayal, and acting for England is still there. The first film is the superior one, but Elizabeth: The Golden Age is interesting as it shows how things have progressed through the life of Queen Elizabeth since the last time.

  9. Direction Very Good 3.5
  10. Play Very Good 3.5
  11. Music Very Good 3.5
  12. Visuals Very Good 3.5
  13. Content
  14. Sordid 2.9

    The violence comes out the most in the brutal battle scenes. There are other occurances particularly in the execution of Mary. This just brings more conflict and overwhelming bloodshed.

  15. Sex Erotic 2.9
  16. Violence Brutal 2.9
  17. Rudeness Profane 2.9
  18. Natural 1.0

    It is based on Queen Elizabeth and follows all of the historical events that took place during her time. It enables us to have a better understanding of them and shows a further chapter in the life of Elizabeth and her country.

  19. Circumstantial Natural 1.0
  20. Biological Natural 1.0
  21. Physical Natural 1.0


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