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Nicholas and Alexandra (1971)

Tsar Nicholas II, the inept monarch of Russia, insensitive to the needs of his people, is overthrown and exiled to Siberia with his family.

Writers:

(book), (additional dialogue) | 1 more credit »
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Roderic Noble ...
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Candace Glendenning ...
Marie
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Irene Worth ...
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Katherine Schofield ...
Tegleva
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John Hallam ...
Nagorny
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Storyline

The tragic story of Nicholas II, the last Czar of Russia, set against the backdrop of the Russian Revolution. It is an inside look into the private lives of Nicholas and his wife Alexandra, their daughters, their only son and the painful secret about their son and heir apparent which bound the Imperial Couple to the mystical Rasputin, and the eventual execution of the entire family. Written by Gailene Va. Holley <gvah@lava.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

13 December 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nicholas y Alexandra  »

Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints) (UK release)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rex Harrison turned down the role of Count Witte, saying, "Tell him [Sam Spiegel] I do not play bit parts." See more »

Goofs

The hairstyles the four girls wear when they are in the basement, is based on the official photographs of 1914. In reality, when the four grand duchesses were imprisoned, they had their heads shaved due to illness. By the time they were killed in July of 1918 their hair had grown to the napes of their necks. See more »

Quotes

[as the Tsar signs his abdication papers]
Tsar Nicholas II: It will be spring soon, at Livadia. That's where you'll send us I imagine. I've often thought I should like to be a country gentleman. I've always liked to watch things grow. It's lovely there. And warm. And they say the soil is very good. Much of the happiness I've known, I've had there.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"By courtesy of the National Theatre of G.B." is written underneath Tom Baker and Laurence Olivier's names in the end credits. "By courtesy of the Royal Shakespeare Company" is written underneath Janet Suzman's name. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Charlie Rose: Quentin Tarantino (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Yankee Doodle
(uncredited)
American traditonal
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User Reviews

 
Fascinating look at Czarist Russia during the Revolution...
7 November 2009 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

This lavish version of NICHOLAS AND ALEXANDRA will especially appeal to anyone who is fascinated by their legendary story and the bitter fate which awaited the family of Nicholas Romanov. One of his daughters was Anastasia. Her story, too, has been told in films and books.

JANET SUZMAN is excellent as the woman who turns for comfort and hope to a madman, Rasputin, while her ineffective husband is unable to convince her that he is a charlatan. MICHAEL JAYSTON is effective as Nicholas, inhabiting the role so completely that you feel he is the man himself. TOM BAKER, who bears a striking resemblance to the real Rasputin, is also up to the demands of his role.

There's a vast canvas of historical background filmed in splendid Technicolor with obviously no expense spared in all the costuming and production design details. The only real drawback is a lack of pacing in several key dramatic scenes, especially toward the end when the family's execution turns into an endless wait for the assassins to enter the room. Many scenes could have been more tightly edited to reduce the running time of over three hours.

The supporting cast includes famous names like LAURENCE OLIVIER and MICHAEL REDGRAVE in what amount to bit roles. The daughters have little to do but the hemophiliac son, Alexis, is played with great sensitivity by RODERIC NOBLE.

The realization that she is responsible for carrying the genes that gave her son his condition, is what torments Alexandra and leads to her unwise decision to take counsel from Rasputin.

Dramatically, the film suffers from the slow pacing--but the story itself is so compelling that it makes up for this deficiency by providing scenes of epic grandeur and stunning cinematography.

It fully deserved its Oscars for Best Art Direction and Costume Design. It was nominated for several other Oscars but Janet Suzman lost to Jane Fonda of KLUTE and the Best Picture award went to THE FRENCH CONNECTION.


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