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The Virgin Queen (1955)

Approved | | Biography, Drama, History | 22 July 1955 (USA)
Sir Walter Raleigh (Richard Todd) overcomes court intrigue to win favor with Queen Elizabeth I (Bette Davis) in order to get financing for a proposed voyage to the New World.

Director:

Henry Koster
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bette Davis ... Queen Elizabeth I
Richard Todd ... Sir Walter Raleigh
Joan Collins ... Beth Throgmorton
Jay Robinson ... Chadwick
Herbert Marshall ... Lord Leicester (Robert Dudley)
Dan O'Herlihy ... Lord Derry
Robert Douglas ... Sir Christopher Hatton
Romney Brent ... French Ambassador
Leslie Parrish ... Anne (as Marjorie Hellen)
Lisa Daniels ... Mary
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Storyline

Sir Walter Raleigh (Richard Todd) gains an audience with Queen Elizabeth I (Bette Davis) and soon wins her over to his way of thinking. He wants ships to sail and make a name for England. A young ward of the court, Beth Throgmorton (Dame Joan Collins), is strongly attracted to Raleigh and returns the attraction. But soon the Queen shows her desires and he bends in order to achieve his goal of ships. But still, he loves Beth. Written by McGinty <McGinty@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

CinemaScope spectacularly spreads before you the velvet cape and violent age of Sir Walter Raleigh and The Virgin Queen.


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 July 1955 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sir Walter Raleigh See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,600,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (Western Electric Recording) (magnetic prints)| Stereo (Western Electric Recording)| Mono (Western Electric Recording) (optical prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rod Taylor appears, uncredited, in a very short scene. He is ostensibly playing a Welshman, given his character's name, but his accent is completely unidentifiable. See more »

Goofs

At the concluding scene of the movie, Queen Elizabeth looks through her window with a telescope, an invention of 1608, five years after her death in 1603. See more »

Quotes

Queen Elizabeth I: And what is your next campaign?
Sir Walter Raleigh: I've already launched on it, Ma'am. My next campaign is you.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: In 1581 all the roads of England led to London -- for better or worse. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Alice in Wonderland (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Excellent portrayal of Elizabeth
11 November 2018 | by cornishrexrastaSee all my reviews

Elizabeth I is nearly always portrayed as stern and unemotional which is probably attributable to the early performances by Dame Flora Robson who set the Elizabeth blueprint. This performance by Bette Davis retains the blueprint but introduces a dark wit to the character. An example is when a scheming ambassador compliments her on her beautiful palace. She replies it was her fathers and that "I will tell him when I see him".

An ambitious adventurer named Walter Raleigh arrives at her court. He only wants three ships to sail and discover gold and the other treasures of the Americas. She takes an instant liking to the handsome Raleigh and the film revolves around her plotting to keep him at her side. She famously refused to marry because she believed in putting country first and here she manipulates Raleigh towards a private relationship that would not diminish her power as Queen in a man's world.

The colorful costumes look a bit party rental but there is plenty of historical accuracy apart from the myth of the "coat over the puddle". The performance from Richard Todd is good but there is little chemistry between him and his wife played by Joan Collins. She delivers her lines so hastily in a modern London accent as if she is about to get on a bus.

The Bette Davis interpretation of Elizabeth and the political machinations at her court are the focus points of the film. There are no dodgy Spanish Armadas or swashbuckling Errol Flynn types detracting from the storytelling or the excellent portrayal of Elizabeth.


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