The story takes place in 16th century England. But men like Sir Thomas More, who love life yet have the moral fiber to lay down their lives for their principles, are found in every century. Concentrating on the last seven years of English chancellor's life, the struggle between More and his King, Henry VIII, hinges on Henry's determination to break with Rome so he can divorce his current wife and wed again, and good Catholic More's inability to go along with such heresy. More resigns as chancellor, hoping to be able to live out his life as a private citizen. But Henry will settle for nothing less than that the much respected More give public approval to his headstrong course. Written by
During the trial of More, after the guards at the back of the room turn around to face the roused crowd (1:57:22), they are facing forward again when the Chief Justice speaks, and facing the rear immediately after, with no time in which to turn. See more »
[first spoken lines are over 6 minutes into the film]
...there's the country every second bastard born is fathered by a priest.
[clears throat to get More's attention]
Why, in Utopia, that couldn't be.
Well, there the priests are very holy.
Therefore, very few.
Sir Thomas More:
Is it anything interesting, Matthew?
Bless you, sir, I don't know.
[...] See more »
Lush costumer well set , magnificently performed and convincing directed
This magnificent picture concerns on Sir Thomas Moro'conflict with Henry VIII . Moro(Paul Scofield, in the title role) was Henry VIII's(Robert Shaw) most able chancellor, he was a man of the Renaissance, lawyer , philosopher, writer(His most famous work was Utopia), and statesman. He was also a devoted husband and father, and, above all, a pious Catholic. Henry was well aware of Moro's brilliance and the strength of his chancellor's religious faith. When Henry proclaimed himself Head of Church, it was inevitable that the two men would clash. The origin conflict takes place when Catherine of Aragon was married to Arthur,Henry VII's older brother, Arthur died six months later, and Henry VIII marries to Catherine.Cardinal Wolsey(Orson Welles) failed to obtain the Pope's permission for Henry's marriage to Anne Boleyn and his fall was swift, he was summoned before Henry and forced to surrender his seal of office. Then Henry breaks with Catholic Church and secretly married Anne Boleyn and after creates Anglican religion. Thomas is led to council formed by Duke of Norfolk(Nigel Davenport), Archbishop Cranmer, Cromwell(Leo McKern) and Richard Rich(John Hurt). Later Moro is judged by the court, those who stood in Henry's way, even those he claimed to love, invariably ended on the scaffold.
This splendid costumer-drama contains excellent performances by all star cast. Paul Scofield won deservedly Academy Award as upright chancellor with fateful destination but he was led from his cell in the Tower of London and beheaded. Outstanding Orson Welles at a brief appearance as Cardinal Wolsey and extraordinary plethora of secondaries as a young John Hurt, Wendy Hiller as his spouse Alice, Nigel Davenport as astute Duke of Norfolk, among others. And of course Robert Shaw as selfish King who discarded his first wife Catherine of Aragon and executed Anne Boleyn-Vanessa Redgrave in a very secondary role-. Colorful,luxurious scenarios by John Box with evocative cinematography by Ted Moore, also Oscar winner. The movie benefits from sensible and perceptible musical score by George Delerue.Brilliant direction by Fred Zinnemann who adapted perfectly Robert Bolt's screenplay.
The story is remade in 1988, an inferior TV version directed and produced by Charlton Heston with John Gielgud as Cardenal Wolsey, again Vanessa Redgrave and Heston as Thomas Moro.
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