Anthony Hope's classic tale gets a decidedly 'un-classic' treatment at the hands of Peter Sellers. Following the story somewhat, friends of the new King Rudolph of Ruritania fear for his ... See full summary »
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>
" 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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