It's 1914, the beginning of WWI. In White River, Ontario, en route to a training camp in Valcartier, Québec, with the Winnipeg section of the Canadian Army Veterinary Corps, Army Lieutenant... See full summary »
John Kent Harrison
Donal is a 14-year old who develops a passion for greyhound racing. He works in a kennel, which is owned by Good Joe. Good Joe promises Donal ownership of Donal's favorite greyhound, The ... See full summary »
The Virgin Queen explores the full sweep of Elizabeth's life: from her days of fear as a potential victim of her sister's terror; through her great love affair with Robert Dudley; into her ... See full summary »
When Elizabeth Tudor comes to the throne, her (male) advisers know she has to marry. Doesn't she? Thus starts a decades-long political/ matrimonial game, during an age of high passions and high achievement.
Despite earlier promises to pass his crown to one of his Flemish, Viking or Norman relatives, English king Edward The Confessor dies in 1066, leaving his crown to Anglo-Saxon Harold Godwinson, causing a bloody succession war.
Mary Queen of Scots gives birth and has intercourse 6 minutes later. See more »
Madam, is there not one man in the whole of Scotland who is good enough for you?
Mary, Queen of Scots:
Wooed by Austria, Spain and now England. What is wrong with my country, madam?
Mary, Queen of Scots:
You're drunk sir.
And you are French, madam. And I would sooner be drunk for a year than French for a day - now is it French to see merit in this long streak of English pish, madam? You do not know what England has done to my country, madam. Raped their women, murdered their children
[guards try to remove him]
[...] See more »
This is a BBC historical drama penned by Jimmy McGovern shown in 3 episodes starting in 1561 with the turbulent reign of Mary Queen of Scots and climaxing with the dastardly plot conceived by Robert Catesby, Guy Fawkes et al to assassinate her son King James by blowing up Parliament on November 5 1605. It is a lively piece, full of political and religious intrigue and very bloody in parts - believe me, the sword is not spared. The directorial style, particularly in the final episode was at times a little disconcerting; some of the characters would suddenly turn and speak directly to the camera, but this was my only criticism.
Some great performances, in particular that of Robert Carlyle as a moody, intense and utterly ruthless King James. An unrecognisable Catherine McCormack (remember Murron, William Wallace's young wife in Braveheart?) plays a scheming, all-powerful Queen Bess ("DESTROY HIM!"), whose scenes are sadly brief but memorable. Clemence Poesy, a gorgeous young French actress, gives the character of Mary a naivete and sensuality previously unseen in period pieces covering this time-frame. British audiences will recognise a now fully-grown Paul Nicholls (young Joe Wicks from Eastenders) who clearly relished his scenes playing the doomed Lord Darnley. (A possible future Bond, perhaps). Steven Duffy does well as a treacherous and highly ambitious Lord James, half-brother of Queen Mary, while Kevin McKidd lends dignity and heroism to the character of Bothwell, lover of the young Queen. Tim McInnerny is previously well-known for his comedic performances in the historical comedy Blackadder, so it was a nice change to see him as the cold, calculating Cecil, most powerful man in England.
The accuracy of certain events will no doubt be disputed by historians (the execution of Queen Mary, for example: never before have I seen it portrayed as a plot by James VI to murder his mother in order to get his own hands on the English Crown). But it is a highly enjoyable period drama whose main theme, the eternal struggle between Protestant and Catholics, is used to great effect to portray the events leading up to one of the most infamous plots in British history, commemorated every single 5th November all over these islands ever since.
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