When customs and excise men arrive at the village of Dymchurch in Kent, they uncover an intricate smuggling network being coordinated by the local parson, Dr Syn. Unknown to all but a few ... See full summary »
Roy William Neill
This movie was the first movie produced in Israel. It deals with the outbreak of hostilities during the war for independence in 1947. The memory from this movie was the sadness and ... See full summary »
In the 15th century Richard Duke of Gloucester, aided by his club-footed executioner Mord, eliminates those ahead of him in succession to the throne, then occupied by his brother King ... See full summary »
Rowland V. Lee
Alexander Graham Bell falls in love with deaf girl Mabel Hubbard while teaching the deaf and trying to invent means for telegraphing the human voice. She urges him to put off thoughts of ... See full summary »
With the end of the Revolutionary War in 1783, General George Washington took Colonel Hamilton with him into the newly formed government. While the main disagreements in the early days was ... See full summary »
The young Gascon D'Artagnan arrives in Paris, his heart set on joining the king's Musketeers. He is taken under the wings of three of the most respected and feared Musketeers, Porthos, ... See full summary »
Successful wealthy shoe manufacturer John Reeves takes a vacation leaving his business in the hands of his nephew. While on vacation Reeves runs into his rivals heirs who are living it up ... See full summary »
John G. Adolfi
Writer and philosopher Voltaire, loyal to his king, Louis XV of France, nonetheless writes scathingly of the king's disdain for the rights and needs of his people. Louis admires Voltaire ... See full summary »
John G. Adolfi
A woman and a man vying for a woman's affection: the usual love trio? Not quite so since the belle in question is Lorraine de Grissac, a very wealthy and alluring society woman, while one ... See full summary »
Joanna Dane, a former O.S.S. operator (forerunner of the CIA), is sent to Tangier by the American authorities to find out who is behind a powerful ring of smugglers that does a booming ... See full summary »
The play first opened in London in 1839; then on Broadway in New York City, New York, USA on 4 September 1839 with Edwin Forrest as the title character. There were 12 Broadway revivals, the last in 1929. See more »
There is no denying that George Arliss's position as a leading star of movies has declined precipitously in the last half century. That he appeared in historical films where he was involved with great events, and bringing fictional lovers together, is used as a joke to dismiss him. Only when studying his actual performances does one realize that his restrained acting was a tremendous advance over the thumping scenary tearing of the silent period. If you doubt this, look at his performance in THE IRON DUKE. Although too short to play Wellington, he does the best with the role. In the film he has to confront the French royal court after the judicial murder of Marshal Ney (1815). The actor playing Louis XVIII is overacting incredibly, and Arliss knows it. Look at the fierce disapproval in his face in that scene.
Here, he is playing Armand Du Plessis, Cardinal Richelieu, the real ruler of France from 1626 to 1642 (the titular ruler was King Louis XIII - here Edward Arnold, splendid but wasted in a small role). Richelieu took a France, long weakened by religious wars (although it had begun a good recovery under King Henri IV and his minister Sully), and made it the supreme power in Western Europe, at the expense of Charles I of England, the Germans in the Thirty Years War (he paid off the King of Sweden to prolong the war), and Spain. Richelieu is usually considered a villain in movies (like THE THREE MUSKETEERS) but he was the creator of modern France. Arliss does very well in the role, bringing the patriotism and brilliance of the cardinal out - and he also happens (for a change) to look like Richelieu. But what makes this performance most interesting is that the film captures a 19th Century theatrical workhorse - Edward Bulwer-Lytton's play RICHELIEU. It was one of the most popular "modern" plays in English and American theatre in the 19th Century, and had been performed by Edwin Booth among others. The key scene for whoever played the Cardinal was "the Curse of Rome" Scene, where Richelieu warns of the wrath of the Papacy if anything happens to him. Arliss delivers this in the film - the sole example of this 19th Century acting moment in film.
27 of 28 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?