Geoffrey Thorpe, a buccaneer, is hired by Queen Elizabeth I to nag the Spanish Armada. The Armada is waiting for the attack on England and Thorpe surprises them with attacks on their galleons where he shows his skills on the sword.
Don Juan de Marana damages Spanish prestige in diplomatic circles with his indiscreet womanizing,although he attempts to rehabilitate his image after he meets the beautiful Queen Margaret, trapped in a loveless arranged marriage with the weak and feckless King Philip III. The Queen becomes the love of Don Juan's life, and although she is obviously attracted to him, the relationship remains appropriately platonic. Becoming caught up in court intrigue, Don Juan uncovers a plot by the King's minister, the ruthless Duke de Lorca, to become the power behind the throne. After de Lorca is exposed by Don Juan, he brazenly intimidates the cowardly king into compliance and threatens to execute the uncooperative queen. Helped by his friends, his servant Leporello, fencing master Don Serafino, and court jester Sebastian, Don Juan tries to foil the Duke's evil machinations.Written by
King Philip and many of his courtiers, as well as courtiers of Elizabeth I, wear the wide brimmed feathered musketeer hat, a fashion of later in the 17th century. The correct fashion for the period, which several characters indeed wear, was a beret decorated with a feather, a look that would last a couple of decades into the beginning of the 17th century. See more »
[narrating voice over]
In Europe, as the seventeenth century dawned, mankind was lifting itself from ignorance and superstition.
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Errol Flynn, at 38, was not exactly as dashingly handsome as he was in his earliest triumph ('The Adventures of Robin Hood') for his life style had begun taking a physical toll on his health. But he looks in good shape (for the most part, except for some tell-tale closeups) and carries off the role with his usual zest, good humor and athletic grace.
He still has a good sidekick in Alan Hale who gets some witty banter with Flynn throughout the fast-moving film. Victor Sherman directs the tongue-in-cheek adventure tale with great style. All of the court intrigue and swashbuckling derring-do is photographed in gorgeous technicolor and accented by a lush pseudo-Spanish Max Steiner score. Fine bits of villainy supplied by Robert Douglas and Raymond Burr and some high spirited romance from women like Viveca Lindfors (at the peak of her physical beauty) and Ann Rutherford.
For fans of Flynn films, this is one of his best. None of it can be taken seriously, but that's part of the fun. From the wry opening to the sly closing scene, this is a pure delight if you're seeking escapist adventure photographed in some of the best color cinematography ever seen.
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