Set right after World War II, a naive teenage girl joins a shabby theatre troupe in Liverpool. During a winter production of Peter Pan, the play quickly turns into a dark metaphor for youth... See full summary »
A bickering couple drive fast through a downpour to catch the last ferry to their island retreat. In a flash, they recognize a crumpled body laying at the side of the road after much ... See full summary »
The movie chronicles the events of history's "man of mystery," Rasputin. Although not quite historically accurate and little emphasis is put on the politics of the day, Rasputin's rise to ... See full summary »
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A young writer is interrogated by a sadistic secret policeman. She is accused of embedding political messages in her children's stories. The entire movie takes place in one room, with only ... See full summary »
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In 1910s Russia, Tsar Nicholas II and his wife Alexandra find their son Alexei, sole heir to the Romanov dynasty, suffering from hemophelia and conventional medicine failing to help him. Alexandra looks into finding holistic treatment and finds Father Grigori Rasputin, a destitute monk who claims he had a vision from the Virgin Mary telling him that the Tsar needed him. Though Nicholas and the royal doctor are both skeptical of Rasputin's alleged healing abilities, young Alexei quickly bonds with the charleton/prophet, so he remains in the Royal Court. But Rasputin's constant boozing and womanizing angers the aristocracy and worsens the already unstable tensions between Nicholas and his subjects. With the seeds of revolution brewing, it becomes increasingly apparent that a bad end awaits for the entire Royal Family. Written by
The movie shows various historical events in incorrect time sequence. For example, the movie depicts Stolypin as being assassinated after the outbreak of the First World War, whereas he was assassinated in 1911 and the First World War started in 1914. Similarly, the movie has the Empress saying at the 1913 Romanov tercentenary celebration that she has been suffering for twelve years on account of the Tsarevich's illness, whereas in fact the Tsarevich was born in 1904. See more »
[in the basement]
We are going to take your picture.
Tsar Nicholas II:
There are rumors in Moscow that you are all dead. Over there.
Can we at least have some chairs?
[two chairs are brought in]
[executioners enter the room]
For crimes against Russia the Ural Soviet has hereby sentence you to death. Your life is finished.
Tsar Nicholas II:
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Grigori Rasputin is one of history's most colourful and bizarre figures, and Alan Rickman, who stars in this HBO film of his life as part of a largely English cast, is one of the few actors with the charisma to play him. Unfortunately, the film doesn't get a lot else right: it's full of tiresome plot exposition, while offering little in the way of a convincing depiction of the daily life of the Russian court. Crucially, Rasputin's character (to the outsider, a mixture of visionary madman, drunken fool and cunning conman) is never adequately dissected: we see all aspects of his behaviour, but the film never dares suggests what it thinks might make him tick. It's also ludicrously sympathetic to the Russian royal family, Ian McKellan play the Tsar as a kindly uncle, and I never expected to see a portrayal of the brutal Stolypin (sometime Prime Minister) bathed in such a warm light. The story (or legend) of Rasputin's death is always amusing to recall; and there's some rarely seen real footage of the Eastern Front spliced into the film. But there's little real insight into the man or his times; a disappointment, especially given the cast list.
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