A timid British Army officer has quit and burns his last day summons to a war in Egypt. Calling him a coward, his girl friend and 3 officer friends give him a white feather. In redemption, he shadows his friends in war to save their lives.
C. Aubrey Smith
This is a classic swashbuckler. Rudolph Rassendyll, Rudolf V's identical distant cousin, is asked to risk his life and impersonate the would-be king when his relative is kidnapped before his impending coronation. If Rudolf V isn't present at the ceremony, he will forfeit the crown to his older half-brother. Complications ensue when Princess Flavia, the king's cousin and betrothed, begins to notice a "personality change" in her fiancé.Written by
Albert Sanchez Moreno <email@example.com>
The sword fight in the castle of Zenda between Coleman and one of the king's guards appears to be with rapiers, however when the fight is picked up again in the outside room the rapiers have become sabers - necessary in order to cut the rope of the drawbridge. See more »
Toward the close of the last century, when History still wore a Rose, and Politics had not yet outgrown the waltz, a Great Royal Scandal was whispered about in the Anterooms of Europe. However true it was, any resemblance in "The Prisoner of Zenda" to Heroes, Villains, Heroines, living or dead, is coincidence not intended...
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" There is of course that other fellow who wants to be king "
This film is based on Anthony Hope's novel and directed by John Cromwell. Over the years, the story has been imitated with many versions. This Black and white offering is so well directed it plays as well in 1937 as in 2011. The lead is played most admirably by Ronald Colman who with his distinctive voice is both Major Rudolf Rassendyll and " The Prisoner of Zenda. " The plot is lead by Black Michael (Raymond Massey) who's facial features are suited for the part of a jealous villain. It is surprising however to see David Niven and Douglas Faitbanks Jr. on opposites sides, but each performs superbly even if Douglas does play a heavy. The inner story is that of a King who is slated for removal by duping the populace that because the king has been killed, Black Michael will assume the thrown in his absence. A later version will have Steward Granger in the title role and in color, but for me, Ronald Coleman will always be the Prisoner of Zenda in this Classic movie. Excellent rendition and highly recommended! ****
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