6 user

Les amours de la reine Élisabeth (1912)

Episodes from the life of Elizabeth I, Queen of England (1533-1603), focusing on her ill-fated love affair with Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex.


(co-director), (co-director)



On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

The story of a poor young woman, separated by prejudice from her husband and baby, is interwoven with tales of intolerance from throughout history.

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Lillian Gish, Robert Harron, Mae Marsh
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

When a married couple become separated in the park, Charlie takes up with the lady and is beat up when her husband rejoins her. He takes a room in their hotel, and she sleepwalks into his ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mack Swain, Alice Davenport
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Mabel and her beau go to an auto race and are joined by Charlie and his friend. As Charlie's friend is attempting to enter the raceway through a hole, the friend gets stuck and a policeman ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mack Swain, Mabel Normand
Short | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Directors: Henri Desfontaines, Louis Mercanton
Stars: Sarah Bernhardt, Max Maxudian, Albert Decoeur
Quo Vadis? (1913)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

An epic Italian film "Quo Vadis" influenced many of the later movies.

Director: Enrico Guazzoni
Stars: Amleto Novelli, Gustavo Serena, Amelia Cattaneo
La voyante (1924)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Jean is thrown out of the house by his father, a remarried politician, out of jealousy for his friendship with his mother-in-law. He finds refuge at an artist's apartment. In the same ... See full summary »

Director: Leon Abrams
Stars: Sarah Bernhardt, Georges Melchior, Harry Baur
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
Director: Clément Maurice
Stars: Sarah Bernhardt, Pierre Magnier, Suzanne Seylor
Drama | Music | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The son of a Jewish Cantor must defy the traditions of his religious father in order to pursue his dream of becoming a jazz singer.

Director: Alan Crosland
Stars: Al Jolson, May McAvoy, Warner Oland
Don Juan (1926)
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

In 16th Century Italy, devil-may-care playboy Don Juan runs afoul of the despotic Borgias.

Director: Alan Crosland
Stars: Jane Winton, John Roche, Warner Oland


Credited cast:
Lou Tellegen ...
Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex
Max Maxudian ...
Howard, Earl of Nottingham (as Maxudian)
Nita Romani ...
Arabella, the Countess of Nottingham (as Mlle. Romani)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jean Chameroy ...
Lord Bacon (as Harmeroy)
Albert Decoeur ...
Sir Francis Drake (as Decoeur)
Georges Deneubourg ...
Marie-Louise Derval ...
Lady Howard
Henri Desfontaines
Dick ...
Guy Favières ...
Paul Guidé ...
Paul Laurent ...
Jacques Stuart
Jane Maylianes ...
Lady Southwell


Episodes from the life of Elizabeth I, Queen of England (1533-1603), focusing on her ill-fated love affair with Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Release Date:

August 1912 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Drottning Elisabeth  »


Box Office


$47,500 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


(Video Version)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Joseph Carl Breil's score is often considered the first original musical score written specifically for a motion picture. Breil was a prominent American composer of opera and operetta in addition to his film score work. See more »


Featured in Mary Pickford: A Life on Film (1997) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Sarah Bernhardt, trapped like a fly in amber
1 February 2003 | by See all my reviews

Much as I enjoy silent films I was disappointed with this famous early feature, although it provides a rare glimpse of a legendary actress. Sure, it's interesting to see Sarah Bernhardt in the role of Elizabeth I, but it's also frustrating to find that the people who adapted the stage play 'Queen Elizabeth' to the screen had no affinity for the cinema. Compare this to the exciting, comparatively fast-paced films D.W. Griffith had already been making for Biograph for several years, or to the innovative work others were doing at Vitagraph and elsewhere, and you'll realize that the producers of this costume drama were old-fashioned even for their time. Unfortunately, this is one of those slow-moving, stodgy efforts that give silent movies a bad name, especially with viewers who haven't seen better examples of the medium.

That said, one can be grateful that the film was made at all, and that it survives, because it does afford us a look at a major personality of the era, and also gives us a sense of what the theater-going experience was like at the time. 'Queen Elizabeth' is very much a filmed play: each scene is arranged for the camera as it would have been performed in a traditional theater on a proscenium stage. The camera sits back along about the fourth row of the orchestra section, and although it pans slightly once or twice it never takes the viewer into the action among the performers. We are forced to sit back and watch the pageant from a respectful distance. The third scene, which involves a fortune teller, appears to have been shot outside under natural lighting, but otherwise the actors declaim before obviously painted sets. (Griffith, meanwhile, was racing his camera alongside speeding trains -- real ones, that is.) We never get a close look at Madame Sarah, but she attempts to compensate with occasional sweeping arm movements, trembly hands, etc., for the folks in the balcony seats. There are no dialog titles, though documents are shown. Otherwise, as in the "Prince Valiant" comic strip, historical title cards tell us exactly what is going to happen prior to each scene -- an annoying device one finds in other early silents, but which happily disappeared a few years after this film was made. The actors, decked out in Elizabethan finery, strike appropriate poses. For the modern viewer, the experience feels like a school-sponsored trip to a wax museum.

Theater historians might be interested in the second scene, when the Queen and her courtiers enjoy a performance of 'The Merry Wives of Windsor,' after which the young playwright William Shakespeare is brought forth for a royal audience. There's also a nicely staged sequence towards the end, when the Queen watches through a picture window as her former lover, the Earl of Essex, is brought back to the palace under arrest. Unable to bear the sight, she has a servant close the curtain, then collapses. It's the dramatic peak of the story, but there's nothing cinematic about the way it's presented: the scene could have been done precisely this way on stage, and no doubt was. And therein lies both the strength and the weakness of this particular piece of celluloid: it's an important document of a legendary actress, but we're left with only a pale shadow of what made her great. It's more than we have of, say, Edwin Booth or Sir Henry Irving, and it's certainly better than nothing, but imagine what a more skilled director could have accomplished with this material and this star.

15 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 6 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page