In 1066 King Edward The Confessor of England dies leaving his crown to Harold despite earlier promises to give the crown to Flemish,Viking and Norman Princes.As a result,Vikings raid the north of England while the Normans invade the south.
This fascinating documentary takes us in Tolkien's footsteps and investigates the landscapes and buildings, the places and names that helped shape Middle Earth. Sir Ian Holm narrates this fascinating exploration into an imaginary world.
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In 1066 King Edward The Confessor of England dies leaving his crown to Harold and forgetting about his earlier promises to leave the throne of England to Flemish, Viking and Norman relatives. As a result of this contest for the English crown, an Armada of Viking ships under Viking King Hardrada invade the north of England while a Norman invasion led by William Duke of Normandy strikes the south. Written by
For me, this film was a success because it captured that horrified sense of loss not only of a battle, or of lives, but of a whole culture and the 650-year history that had produced it. The decision to focus only on the ordinary foot-soldiers (to the extent that none of the three leaders had a single line to speak, and William did not even appear on screen) was a good one, since it allowed the story to represent the fate of peoples instead of just the fate of kings. The narration, in a good imitation of the style of Anglo-Saxon epic poetry, was mournful and measured, and the revelation of the narrator's identity at the end nicely rounded out one thread of the story. Despite the constant bloodletting, the characters were attractive: Leofric the happy-go-lucky coward who does the right thing in the end; Hrothgar the weary general always trying to rally his weary men for one more fight; and Snorri the captured Viking who becomes a mainstay of the English at Hastings. The final stages at Hastings reminded me of the poem commemorating another English defeat, 75 years before:
"Thought shall be harder, heart shall be keener / Spirit shall be greater, as our might lessens." (The Battle of Maldon, 991)
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