Young Harry is in love and wants to marry an actress, much to the displeasure of his family. Harry thinks that Bishop Armstrong knows nothing about love so Armstrong tells him the story of ... See full summary »
Queen Christina of Sweden is a dominant European ruler in the 17th century, and has never thought of romance. However, she accidentally and secretly falls in love with an emissary from Spain, even though a marriage between the two seems out of the question.Written by
Since John Gilbert was falling out of favor with the majors as a leading man, Greta Garbo was doing him a big favor by requesting him as the male lead. Unfortunately, the film did not help to re-establish Gilbert, and soon after he dropped out of pictures altogether. See more »
Christina's musket pistol did not make a cloud of smoke. See more »
I have grown up in a great man's shadow. All my life I've been a symbol. A symbol as eternal, changeless. An abstraction. A human being is mortal and changeable - with desires and impulses, hopes and despairs. I'm tired of being a symbol, Chancellor. I long to be a human being. This longing I cannot suppress.
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I sometimes think that films should be ranked rather like golfers, with a seniors' section for the over 50s. It is often difficult for the inherent quality of a film to shine through the grainy black and white, crackly sound, stagey sets and ludicrous back-projections. One test of a classic film is: if you went and saw it at your local multiplex tonight, would you enjoy it. Maybe Casablanca, Double Indemnity, The Maltese Falcon...and, surprisingly, Queen Christina looking as modern and sexy today as when it was made in 1933. The main thing that makes it stand out from the crowd is its literate and thoughtful screenplay. The subject matter is new to most people who, like myself, have only the sketchiest of knowledge about 17th century Swedish history. Garbo is magnificent as an intelligent, liberated queen. She spends most of the film in men's clothes and thigh-length boots. I'm always rather incredulous of the Shakespearean convention where the heroine only has to put on a pair of trousers and everyone assumes she is a boy. Queen Christina delightfully pokes fun at this convention. Garbo, dressed as a boy, finds that she has to share the last room at the inn with John Gilbert, the Spanish envoy. In a scene that radiates sexiness, Garbo only has to take off her jacket for Gilbert to realise that she is all woman.
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