Mrs Brown (1997)
Queen Victoria: No-one should think themselves wiser than me! It is not for any of the Queen's subjects to presume to tell Her Majesty when and where She should come out of mourning. It is the Queen's sorrow that keeps her secluded! It is Her overwhelming amount of work and responsibility, work which She feels will soon wear her out entirely! Is it not enough that She is uncheered and unguided that she should also have to suffer these malicious rumors? I am not a fool. I know there are those in the establishment too afraid to attack me and so they attack my dearest friends. Sometimes I feel that Brown is all I have left of Albert. And now they attack Brown too. I will not give him up to them.
Prince of Wales (Bertie): I wish to see my mother.
John Brown: She's busy.
Prince of Wales (Bertie): Then convey her a message.
John Brown: She's away to Windsor tomorrow. Talk to her there.
Prince of Wales (Bertie): Tell her the Prince of Wales wishes to speak with her urgently about matters concerning the press.
John Brown: Are you deaf as well as stupid?
Prince of Wales (Bertie): What did you say?
John Brown: I said, Are you deaf as well as stupid?
Prince of Wales (Bertie): Do you know who you address, sir?
John Brown: "Whom" you address.
Prince of Wales (Bertie): [angrily] Get out of my way!
John Brown: [pinning him to the wall] Why don't you just leave us alone?
Lord Stanley: [the Prince of Wales has just had a rather cryptic conversation with Disraeli] What did he want?
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: To know when he'll be king.
Queen Victoria: [Queen spills water down her front]
John Brown: Honest to God woman, I never thought I'd see you in such a state, you must miss him dreadfully.
Queen Victoria: You do not! - he- Get him out!
[heads towards door]
Queen Victoria: GET HIM OUT! GET HIM OUT!
[reporters and photographers are hiding, trying to get clandestine photos of the Queen and Brown. Brown smells a rat and goes off to investigate]
Journalist: Where'd he go?
John Brown: [appearing right next to them] THIS CLOSE ENOUGH FOR YOU BOYS?
John Brown: You tell *Her Majesty* that if her husband were here he'd tell her to get out of the house and get some air into her lungs.
Queen Victoria: Mr Brown.
John Brown: Yes, ma'am.
Queen Victoria: You have been told repeatedly not to stand in the courtyard unless requested to do so.
John Brown: Yes, ma'am.
Queen Victoria: Then why do you persist in doing it?
John Brown: Because I think Her Majesty is wrong. If ever there was a poor soul who needed fresh air, it is her.
Queen Victoria: The Queen will ride out if and when she chooses.
John Brown: And I intend to be there when she's ready.
John Brown: It's only grief makes her like she is.
Archie Brown: Three years, John. Is that not a bit long to be grieving?
John Brown: She loved him.
Archie Brown: Come on, man. There's love and there's...
John Brown: What?
Archie Brown: You know what I mean.
John Brown: I'm not sure I do, Archie.
Archie Brown: There's love and there's behaving like you do because there's nobody to tell you not to.
Queen Victoria: Duty? You talk about duty?
John Brown: If duty and safety are served by the same end then, aye, I do.
Queen Victoria: I cannot believe you are saying this? You, who I have relied on all this time.
John Brown: Have I ever let you down before?
Queen Victoria: You stand there and tell me it is my duty. After all you promised me!
John Brown: I'm breaking no promises!
Queen Victoria: You are forcing me to do the very thing you know I fear most!
John Brown: For god's sake, woman, I'm just trying to keep you safe!
Queen Victoria: I will not hear any more about my safety! You made me a promise and now you have broken it!
John Brown: When I took you out riding, come rain or shine, because I knew it was right for you, when I kept the bairns off your back so you could have a bit of peace, when I saw you safe from home to home and you didn't even knowI was there. All I've ever thought about is you!
Queen Victoria: Then why send me back to them?
John Brown: Because I have to! Will you no listen to me, woman?
Queen Victoria: Do not presume to talk to your Queen in that manner.
Queen Victoria: Why aren't you with him?
Princess Alexandra: You ordered all members of the Royal Family attend you at Balmoral, ma'am.
Title Card: Queen Victoria came to the throne in 1837, at the age of eighteen.
Title Card: At twenty she married Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg. It was one of the happiest royal marriages in history.
Title Card: When he died from typhoid in 1861, she was inconsolable.
John Brown: God save the Queen!
[shoots into the dark]
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: [Inside a horse-drawn carriage traveling across a huge Highland landscape] Yesterday, Gladstone talked for three hours on the Irish Church Bill... I am as guilty as the rest of underestimating his reforming zeal. Tory days may be numbered, but I fancy there yet remains one last hope of deliverance. Wheresoever the blame lies, we must now close ranks and defend Mrs Brown's England. As for my interminable journey to the land of Calvin, oatcakes and sulphur...
[arrives at Balmoral]
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: no Prime Minister made greater sacrifice than attempting to run the country six hundred miles north of civilization.
Queen Victoria: [to Prime Minister Disraeli] How dare the Irish break with the Anglicans? If Albert were alive today he would never allow the Crown to give up Church patronage. No, the Irish must be told, very firmly, to stay exactly where they are. It is the thin edge of the wedge, Mr Disraeli. Next, you will be telling me that the Crown no longer governs this nation.
John Brown: All I wanted to tell her was how I feel for God's sake!
Archie Brown: You don't tell Her Majesty how you feel
John Brown: You could buy that lot for garden ornaments and still see change from ten guineas.
Henry Ponsonby: I have sent for a Mr. John Brown from Balmoral. Her Majesty has mentioned him, on one or two occasions, as being a most devoted outdoor servant to Prince Albert during his last days there. The depths of the Queen's sorrow remain impenetrable. She has now restricted herself to a regime of such ferocious introspection that we are all at our wits' end. The Household continues, at her instruction, to observe the rituals now so familiar to her, in a vain attempt to render vivid that which can never be revived. It will not surprise you to hear that she continues steadfast in her refusal to accept any public engagements, however trivial. Family and staff expend all their efforts endeavouring to draw her out of this state of unfettered morbidity, but to no avail. Indeed, Doctor Jenner will not undertake to vouchsafe her sanity, unless some remedy is found. We must hope, therefore, that this Mr Brown will appeal to the Queen's sentimental, though deeply-held, view that all Highlanders are good for the health. If she can at least be persuaded to take the air, the prospect of further recovery may seem less remote. He is arriving by boat this afternoon, by which time it is hoped Her Majesty will be in a fit state to consider riding out. As to that decision, along with all others, we remain, as ever, prisoners of the Queen's grief. Ever your devoted husband, Henry.
Queen Victoria: I will not tolerate anybody lecturing me about the responsibility of the monarchy. Least of all my son. It was his irresponsibility that drove my husband to his grave.
John Brown: If I catch the miserable by-blow who told those men where she'd be, then I'll hang his balls to dry on Jock Wemyss, so I will!
John Brown: If I find out that you had anything to do with this, I will have you sacked.
Henry Ponsonby: I believe that decision rests with Her Majesty.
John Brown: Don't think I can't persuade her.
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: [stridently to Parliament] This nation is fortunate insomuch as it is not governed by force, but by a chain of traditions that have been cherished from generation to generation. Because in them, in our traditions, are embodied all the laws that have enabled us to create the greatest empire of modern time!
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: And even though we have amassed great capital, and even though we have established an industry with no parallel in the world. Yet all these mighty creations are as nothing compared to the invisible customs which shape our lives.
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: To those honorable gentlemen of the opposition that seek to destroy the essential elements of this country I say, let them remember England cannot begin again!
John Brown: I'm Her Majesty's Highland servant! Indoors and out. There's no stoppin' me now.
Henry Ponsonby: We are, all of us, subject to forces beyond our control, Mr Brown. Even you.
John Brown: You'll regret saying that.
Queen Victoria: I have noticed of late that my feelings of grief are not so strong, and I find myself leaning more on the comfort of living friends. Friends close to me now.
Doctor Jenner: Your Majesty, a settled resignation is more lasting proof of affection than active grief. If the Good Lord sees fit to bring one into contact with congenial fellow beings, one need not analyze one's reaction too deeply. To allow oneself to be comforted by someone else need not imply disloyalty to the memory of the loved one.
John Brown: Do you hunt?
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: Mmm, occasionally.
John Brown: Daresay we could have you taught.
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: To shoot, perhaps, but not to kill.
John Brown: If you hunt, you hunt to kill.
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: Well, then, I'll do my best.
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: [catching his breath after climbing a knoll] Princes and lords are but the breath of kings. An honest man is the noblest work of God.
John Brown: I promised to protect her - from people like you.
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: [chuckling] For once in my life, I'm not the issue.
John Brown: She'll never understand it.
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: Oh, in time she will.
John Brown: She'll think I've betrayed her.
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli: But others will know that you acted for the greater good.
Doctor Jenner: [about John Brown] Cause of death was pneumonia.
Henry Ponsonby: Not too protracted, I hope.
Doctor Jenner: A few days. When he heard, the Prince of Wales threw the bust over the wall of the north tower. Took four hours to gather the fragments.
Henry Ponsonby: Queen wishes to publish an account of him.
Doctor Jenner: Dear, oh, dear.
Henry Ponsonby: We think she can be dissuaded. Have you had a glance at the diary?
Doctor Jenner: Yes.
Henry Ponsonby: Quite. I think I best take it back.
Doctor Jenner: Oh, of course.
[hands it to him]
Doctor Jenner: Where did you find it, by the way?
Henry Ponsonby: Oh, some young Page was boasting about having seen it. Lucky.
Doctor Jenner: [chuckles] Well, no rest for the wicked, Henry.
Henry Ponsonby: [walking away with the diary] No. Indeed...
[to a princess at lunch]
Queen Victoria: You're not eating enough. One must not let vanity overrule appetite.