English Royalty in Film and Television

by LitCritChas | created - 18 Dec 2012 | updated - 19 Dec 2015 | Public

A list devoted to gathering the titles of films and television specials aimed at portraying the lives and reigns of English monarchs.

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1. Warrior Queen (2003)

83 min | Action, Drama, History

Boudica, the Warrior Queen on Britain, leads her tribe into rebellion against the Roman Empire and the mad Emperor of Rome Nero.

Director: Bill Anderson | Stars: Alex Kingston, Steven Waddington, Emily Blunt, Leanne Rowe

Votes: 1,022

2. The Saxon Chronicles (2006)

120 min | Action, Drama, History

Set in the 9th century, Alfred the Great, England's most influential and inspiring king, escapes his kingdom when it is attacked by the Viking Horde. Anguished and alone he finds himself in... See full summary »

Director: Jeshua De Horta | Stars: Darin Southam, James C. Morris, Doug Guibord, Dan Christensen

Votes: 39

3. Aethelflaeda: Saxon Queen (2011)

Short, History

Commissioned for the Chester Heritage Trail this film shows Queen Aethelflaeda rallying her troops after taking the throne after the death of her father King Alfred the Great.

Director: Phil Hirst | Star: Lisa-Marie Hoctor

5. Lady Godiva of Coventry (1955)

Approved | 89 min | Drama, History

Fictionalized account of events leading up the famous nude ride (alas, her hair covers everything) of the militant Saxon lady.

Director: Arthur Lubin | Stars: Maureen O'Hara, George Nader, Victor McLaglen, Rex Reason

Votes: 374

6. 1066 (II)

Action, Adventure, Drama | Pre-production

October 14th, 1066 is the most famous date in English history. It is the year of two invasions of England, and in which three huge and bloody pitched battles were fought. The feared Norse ... See full summary »

Director: Robin Jacob | Stars: Olivia Hussey, Katia Winter, Ian Whyte, Mark Lester

7. Blood Royal: William the Conqueror (1990 TV Movie)

Drama, History, War

In 1066, weakened Anglo-Saxon King Harold II faces the invasion of enemy French forces led by Norman-French Duke William II of Normandy. Harold makes the fateful decision to fortify himself at Hastings Castle. The rest is history.

Director: Peter Jefferies | Stars: Adam Bareham, Brian Blessed, Anna Calder-Marshall, Simon Dutton

Votes: 6

8. Mystery!: Cadfael (1994–1996)

75 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

The medieval era cases of a Crusader-turned-Monk who investigates mysteries in the Norman English town of Shrewsbury.

Stars: Derek Jacobi, Michael Culver, Julian Firth, Terrence Hardiman

Votes: 1,853

9. The Pillars of the Earth (2010)

TV-MA | 60 min | Drama, History, Romance

Set against a backdrop of war, religious strife and power struggles which tears lives and families apart.

Stars: Ian McShane, Matthew Macfadyen, Eddie Redmayne, Hayley Atwell

Votes: 25,117

10. The Devil's Crown (1978– )

55 min | Drama, History

Henry Plantagenet (later King Henry II), sees his opportunity to seize the crown of England and create a kingdom of law and order.

Stars: Jane Lapotaire, Christopher Gable, John Duttine, Brian Cox

Votes: 58

11. Becket (1964)

PG-13 | 148 min | Biography, Drama, History

68 Metascore

King Henry II of England comes to terms with his affection for his close friend and confidant Thomas à Becket, who finds his true honor by observing God's divine will rather than the king's.

Director: Peter Glenville | Stars: Richard Burton, Peter O'Toole, John Gielgud, Gino Cervi

Votes: 12,090

12. The Lion in Winter (1968)

PG | 134 min | Biography, Drama, History

1183 A.D.: King Henry II's three sons all want to inherit the throne, but he won't commit to a choice. They and his wife variously plot to force him.

Director: Anthony Harvey | Stars: Peter O'Toole, Katharine Hepburn, Anthony Hopkins, John Castle

Votes: 25,476 | Gross: $0.02M

13. El Naser Salah el Dine (1963)

90 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

Saladin, ruler of the kingdoms surrounding the Latin state of Jerusalem, is brought to attack the Christians in the Holy Land by the sacking of a convoy of Muslim pilgrims, a group which ... See full summary »

Director: Youssef Chahine | Stars: Ahmed Mazhar, Mohamed Abdel Gawad, Mahmoud Almeleji, Tawfik El Deken

Votes: 1,619

14. Ivanhoe (1997– )

270 min | Adventure, Drama, Romance

Ivanhoe returning from crusading in the Holy Land to England which is ruled by corrupt Prince John.

Stars: David Barrass, Ralph Brown, Jimmy Chisholm, Trevor Cooper

Votes: 872

15. The Life and Death of King John (1984 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 155 min

King John does whatever it takes to keep himself on the throne of England, making enemies of the pope, France, and his nephew along the way.

Director: David Giles | Stars: Leonard Rossiter, William Whymper, Mary Morris, Robert Brown

Votes: 81

16. The Bruce (1996)

107 min | Biography, Drama, History

In the early 14th century, Scottish warrior and Earl Robert the Bruce is crowned King of Scots, leading Scotland during the First War of Scottish Independence against England.

Directors: Bob Carruthers, David McWhinnie | Stars: Gary Andrew, Brian Blessed, Richard Brimblecombe, Conor Chamberlain

Votes: 532

Although mostly about the French Monarchy leading up to the Hundred Years War, it also gives a good picture of how Edward II came to fall.

18. Edward II (1991)

R | 87 min | Drama, History, Romance

In this Derek Jarman version of Christopher Marlowe's Elizabethan drama, in modern costumes and settings, Plantagenet king Edward II hands the power-craving nobility the perfect excuse by ... See full summary »

Director: Derek Jarman | Stars: Steven Waddington, Kevin Collins, Andrew Tiernan, John Lynch

Votes: 2,040 | Gross: $0.69M

19. World Without End (2012)

374 min | Drama, History, Romance

The English town of Kingsbridge works to survive as the King leads the nation into the Hundred Years' War with France while Europe deals with the outbreak of the Black Death.

Stars: Ben Chaplin, Charlotte Riley, Nora von Waldstätten, Oliver Jackson-Cohen

Votes: 6,946

20. The Dark Avenger (1955)

Unrated | 85 min | Adventure, Drama, History

During the 14th century when the Hundred-Year War between France and England ends with the English occupation of French Aquitainia rebel French knights vow to oust Prince Edward of Walles, ruler of Aquitainia.

Director: Henry Levin | Stars: Errol Flynn, Joanne Dru, Peter Finch, Yvonne Furneaux

Votes: 412

21. The Hollow Crown (2012– )

150 min | Drama, History

A miniseries of adaptations of Shakespeare's history plays: Richard II, Henry IV Parts One and Two, and Henry V.

Stars: Anton Lesser, Simon Russell Beale, Tom Georgeson, John Mackay

Votes: 4,429

22. Richard II (1997 TV Movie)

Drama

The incompetent Richard II is deposed by Henry Bolingbroke and undergoes a crisis of identity once he is no longer king.

Director: Deborah Warner | Stars: Fiona Shaw, Graham Crowden, Richard Bremmer, David Lyon

Votes: 55

23. Henry IV Part I (1979 TV Movie)

148 min | Drama

Henry Bolingbroke has now been crowned King of England, but faces a rebellion headed by the embittered Earl of Northumberland and his son (nicknamed 'Hotspur'). Henry's son Hal, the Prince ... See full summary »

Director: David Giles | Stars: Jon Finch, David Gwillim, Rob Edwards, Robert Brown

Votes: 154

24. Henry IV Part II (1979 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 150 min | Drama

Henry Bolingbroke has now been crowned King of England, but faces a rebellion headed by the embittered Earl of Northumberland and his son (nicknamed 'Hotspur'). Henry's son Hal, the Prince ... See full summary »

Director: David Giles | Stars: Jon Finch, David Gwillim, Rob Edwards, Martin Neil

Votes: 105

25. Henry V (1989)

PG-13 | 137 min | Action, Biography, Drama

83 Metascore

In the midst of the Hundred Years War, the young King Henry V of England embarks on the conquest of France in 1415.

Director: Kenneth Branagh | Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Derek Jacobi, Simon Shepherd, James Larkin

Votes: 25,437 | Gross: $10.16M

26. The First Part of Henry the Sixth (1983 TV Movie)

188 min

Following his father's early death and the loss of possessions in France, young Henry VI comes to the throne, under the protection of the Duke of Gloucester. He is unaware that there are ... See full summary »

Director: Jane Howell | Stars: John Benfield, Peter Benson, Brenda Blethyn, Antony Brown

Votes: 88

27. The Second Part of Henry the Sixth (1983 TV Movie)

203 min

Following his father's early death and the loss of possessions in France young Henry VI comes to the throne, under the protection of the duke of Gloucester. He is unaware that there are ... See full summary »

Director: Jane Howell | Stars: John Benfield, Peter Benson, Antony Brown, David Burke

Votes: 72

28. The Third Part of Henry the Sixth (1983 TV Movie)

211 min

Following his father's early death and the loss of possessions in France young Henry VI comes to the throne, under the protection of the duke of Gloucester. He is unaware that there are ... See full summary »

Director: Jane Howell | Stars: John Benfield, Peter Benson, Gerald Blackmore, Antony Brown

Votes: 70

29. The White Queen (2013)

TV-MA | 60 min | Drama, History, Romance

Three different, yet equally relentless women vie for the throne in 15th Century England.

Stars: Aneurin Barnard, Rebecca Ferguson, Amanda Hale, Faye Marsay

Votes: 18,573

30. Richard III (1995)

R | 110 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, War

The classic Shakespearean play about a murderously scheming king staged in an alternative fascist England setting.

Director: Richard Loncraine | Stars: Ian McKellen, Annette Bening, Christopher Bowen, Edward Jewesbury

Votes: 12,467 | Gross: $2.60M

31. The Shadow of the Tower (1972– )

Biography, Drama, History

A series of dramas by various writers recording the key events in the reign of Henry Tudor and his founding of the Tudor Dynasty

Stars: James Maxwell, Norma West, Hugh Sullivan, Denis Carey

Votes: 136

32. Princes in the Tower (2005 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 120 min | Drama

Sixteen years after the presumed deaths of the two boy princes held captive in the Tower, Perkin Warbeck makes his claim to the throne as the rightful King Richard. Did the younger brother ... See full summary »

Director: Justin Hardy | Stars: Mark Umbers, John Castle, Roger Hammond, Sally Edwards

Votes: 117

33. The Six Wives of Henry VIII (1970– )

540 min | Drama, History, Romance

A six-episode dramatization of Henry VIII's relationships with each of his six wives. Each episode is devoted to one wife, and is a complete play in itself.

Stars: Keith Michell, Anthony Quayle, Patrick Troughton, Bernard Hepton

Votes: 1,062

34. Henry VIII (1979 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 166 min

Henry VIII is a proud and wilful monarch who defies Rome's ban on divorce to marry his mistress Anne Boleyn. Cardinal Wolsey, the Powerful Lord Chancellor of England, attempts to bend Rome ... See full summary »

Director: Kevin Billington | Stars: John Stride, Claire Bloom, Ronald Pickup, Barbara Kellerman

Votes: 86

35. Anne of the Thousand Days (1969)

PG | 145 min | Biography, Drama, History

Henry VIII of England discards one wife, Katharine of Aragon, who has failed to produce a male heir, in favor of the young and beautiful Anne Boleyn.

Director: Charles Jarrott | Stars: Richard Burton, Geneviève Bujold, Irene Papas, Anthony Quayle

Votes: 5,832

36. Lady Jane (1986)

PG-13 | 136 min | Biography, Drama, History

The death of King Henry VIII throws his kingdom into chaos because of succession disputes. His weak son Edward, is on his deathbed. Anxious to keep England true to the Reformation, a ... See full summary »

Director: Trevor Nunn | Stars: Helena Bonham Carter, Cary Elwes, John Wood, Michael Hordern

Votes: 5,489 | Gross: $0.28M

37. Elizabeth (1998)

R | 124 min | Biography, Drama, History

75 Metascore

A film of the early years of the reign of Elizabeth I of England and her difficult task of learning what is necessary to be a monarch.

Director: Shekhar Kapur | Stars: Cate Blanchett, Geoffrey Rush, Christopher Eccleston, Joseph Fiennes

Votes: 81,934 | Gross: $30.08M

38. The Virgin Queen (2005– )

237 min | Biography, Drama, History

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 »

Stars: Anne-Marie Duff, Sienna Guillory, Ian Hart, Tom Hardy

Votes: 2,413

39. Mary, Queen of Scots (1971)

PG-13 | 128 min | Biography, Drama, History

During the sixteenth century, the Catholic Mary, Queen of Scots engages in over two decades of religious and political conflict with her cousin, the Protestant Queen Elizabeth I of England, amidst political intrigue in her native land.

Director: Charles Jarrott | Stars: Vanessa Redgrave, Glenda Jackson, Patrick McGoohan, Timothy Dalton

Votes: 3,443

40. Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007)

PG-13 | 114 min | Biography, Drama, History

45 Metascore

A mature Queen Elizabeth endures multiple crises late in her reign including court intrigues, an assassination plot, the Spanish Armada, and romantic disappointments.

Director: Shekhar Kapur | Stars: Cate Blanchett, Clive Owen, Geoffrey Rush, Jordi Mollà

Votes: 59,426 | Gross: $16.29M

41. Gunpowder, Treason & Plot (2004 TV Movie)

TV-MA | 205 min | Drama, History

Mini series depicting the turbulent and bloody reigns of Scottish monarchs Mary, Queen of Scots and her son King James VI of Scotland who became King James I of England and foiled the Gunpowder Plot.

Director: Gillies MacKinnon | Stars: Vulpe Adrian, Carmen Ungureanu, Clémence Poésy, Tadeusz Pasternak

Votes: 1,415

42. The New World (2005)

PG-13 | 135 min | Biography, Drama, History

69 Metascore

The story of the English exploration of Virginia, and of the changing world and loves of Pocahontas.

Director: Terrence Malick | Stars: Colin Farrell, Q'orianka Kilcher, Christopher Plummer, Christian Bale

Votes: 76,144 | Gross: $12.71M

43. To Kill a King (2003)

Not Rated | 102 min | Biography, Drama, History

A recounting of the relationship between General Fairfax and Oliver Cromwell, as they try to cope with the consequences of deposing King Charles I.

Director: Mike Barker | Stars: Tim Roth, Dougray Scott, Olivia Williams, James Bolam

Votes: 2,736

44. Cromwell (1970)

G | 139 min | Biography, Drama, History

Oliver Cromwell can no longer tolerate King Charles' policies, and the self-interest of the ruling class, and leads a civil war to install Parliament as the ultimate ruler of England.

Director: Ken Hughes | Stars: Richard Harris, Alec Guinness, Robert Morley, Dorothy Tutin

Votes: 4,047

45. The Devil's Whore (2008)

55 min | Drama, History, Romance

Set between the years 1642 and 1660, "The Devil's Whore" charts the progress of the English Civil War through the eyes of a 17 year old girl, the fictional Angelica Fanshawe.

Stars: Andrea Riseborough, Dominic West, Tom Goodman-Hill, John Simm

Votes: 2,052

46. The Last King (2003– )

TV-14 | 188 min | Biography, Drama, History

The chronicle of Charles II's time on the throne, his 10 year exile from Oliver Cromwell's England, and his triumphant return.

Stars: Rufus Sewell, Rupert Graves, Charlie Creed-Miles, Christian Coulson

Votes: 1,299

47. England, My England (1995)

153 min | Biography, Drama, History

In 1960s, a British playwright attempts to reconstruct the life of real life 17th century English composer Henry Purcell even though little is known about him. Purcell's life is reenacted and his music performed.

Director: Tony Palmer | Stars: Simon Callow, Michael Ball, Rebecca Front, Lucy Speed

Votes: 137

48. Bonnie Prince Charlie (1948)

Passed | 98 min | Biography, Drama, History

In the Jacobite Rising of 1745, the Young Pretender Bonnie Prince Charlie leads an insurrection to overthrow the Protestant House of Hanover and restore his family, the Catholic branch of the House of Stuart, to the British throne.

Directors: Anthony Kimmins, Alexander Korda | Stars: David Niven, Margaret Leighton, Morland Graham, John Laurie

Votes: 174

49. Aristocrats (1999– )

TV-14 | 300 min | Drama, History

18th-century England and Ireland viewed through the eyes of four beautiful high-born sisters - Caroline, Emily, Louisa, and Sarah Lennox, great-granddaughters of a king, daughters of a cabinet minister, and wives of politicians and peers.

Stars: Siân Phillips, Alun Armstrong, Ben Daniels, Serena Gordon

Votes: 1,125

50. The Madness of King George (1994)

PG-13 | 104 min | Biography, Comedy, Drama

89 Metascore

When King George III goes mad, his lieutenants try to adjust the rules to run the country without his participation.

Director: Nicholas Hytner | Stars: Nigel Hawthorne, Helen Mirren, Rupert Graves, Amanda Donohoe

Votes: 13,440 | Gross: $15.24M

51. Prince Regent (1979– )

50 min

The life and times of George (1762-1830), Prince of Wales, from his early days of debauchery to his ascent to the throne as George IV. His two marriages (one legal, one not), his mistresses... See full summary »

Stars: Peter Egan, Bosco Hogan, Nigel Davenport, Frances White

Votes: 20

52. Mrs. Fitzherbert (1947)

99 min | Drama, History

6.3