6.4/10
928
27 user 7 critic

Alfred the Great (1969)

While Old England is being ransacked by roving Danes in the ninth century, Alfred is planning to join the priesthood. But observing the rape of his land, he puts away his religious vows, to... See full summary »

Director:

Clive Donner

Writers:

James R. Webb (story), Ken Taylor (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
David Hemmings ... Alfred
Michael York ... Guthrum
Prunella Ransome ... Aelhswith
Colin Blakely ... Asher
Ian McKellen ... Roger
Peter Vaughan ... Burrud
Alan Dobie Alan Dobie ... Ethelred
Julian Glover ... Æthelstan
Vivien Merchant ... Freda
Julian Chagrin ... Ivar
Jim Norton ... Thanet
John Rees John Rees ... Cuthbert
Christopher Timothy ... Cerdic
Peter Blythe ... Eafa
Sinéad Cusack ... Edith
Learn more

More Like This 

Certificate: M/PG Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A young London woman, studying for her doctorate in the British Museum, spends her nights trying to avoid the sexual admiration of men in her life.

Director: Waris Hussein
Stars: Sandy Dennis, Ian McKellen, Michael Coles
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The Tragedy of King Richard II, by William Shakespeare. The actions and repercussions of a proud King, whose vanity and selfishness lead to his downfall.

Directors: Richard Cottrell, Toby Robertson
Stars: Ian McKellen, Timothy West, Robert Eddison
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In 1854, during the Crimean War, poor planning leads to the British Light Brigade openly charging a Russian artillery position with tragic consequences.

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Trevor Howard, Vanessa Redgrave, John Gielgud
She I (1965)
Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

An Edwardian archaeologist and two companions stumble upon a lost city in East Africa, run by a beautiful queen whose love holds the promise of immortality.

Director: Robert Day
Stars: Ursula Andress, Peter Cushing, Bernard Cribbins
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Following the banning and burning of his novel, "The Rainbow", D.H. Lawrence and his wife, Frieda, move to the United States, and then to Mexico. When Lawrence contracts tuberculosis, they ... See full summary »

Director: Christopher Miles
Stars: Janet Suzman, Ian McKellen, Graham Faulkner
David Copperfield (TV Series 1966)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A gentle orphan discovers life and love in an indifferent adult world.

Stars: Ian McKellen, Tina Packer, Flora Robson
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Norman is the assistant helping to run a small, old fashioned dairy which is threatened by a larger, modern organisation. Norman does his best to save the dairy (and his horse) and the ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Asher
Stars: Norman Wisdom, Edward Chapman, Jerry Desmonde
Zina (1985)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

After Stalin's purges, Zinaida Volkova, daughter of Leon Trotsky, is exiled to Berlin. As the Nazis rise to power, and World War II is approaching, she becomes obsessed with Antigone, the protagonist of a famous Greek tragedy, and loses her mind.

Director: Ken McMullen
Stars: Rom Anderson, Ron Anderson, George Antoni
Hot Millions (1968)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Paroled London fraudster Marcus Pendleton (Sir Peter Ustinov) poses as a computer specialist in order to work for an insurance company that entirely relies on its corporate server.

Director: Eric Till
Stars: Peter Ustinov, Maggie Smith, Karl Malden
Hamlet I (TV Movie 1970)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Hamlet suspects his uncle has murdered his father to claim the throne of Denmark and the hand of Hamlet's mother, but the Prince cannot decide whether or not he should take vengeance.

Director: David Giles
Stars: Ian McKellen, Faith Brook, John Woodvine
Edward II (TV Movie 1970)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The reign of Edward II, King of England, is troubled from the start, when he brings his male lover, hated by the nobles, out of exile.

Directors: Richard Marquand, Toby Robertson
Stars: Ian McKellen, Timothy West, Diane Fletcher
The Promise (1969)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

During the siege of Leningrad, Marat goes to the partly wrecked house of his parents, and finds Lika, a sixteen-year-old girl, who has sought shelter. They become friendly and fall in love,... See full summary »

Director: Michael Hayes
Stars: John Castle, Ian McKellen, Susan Macready
Edit

Storyline

While Old England is being ransacked by roving Danes in the ninth century, Alfred is planning to join the priesthood. But observing the rape of his land, he puts away his religious vows, to take up arms against the invaders, leading the English Christians to fight for their country. Alfred soundly defeats the Danes and becomes a hero. But now, although Alfred still longs for the priesthood, he is torn between his passion for God and his lust for blood. Written by Ørnås

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The dissenter king. See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

M/PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

A 3/4-sized replica of the White Horse in Berkshire was recreated on the slopes of Knockma Hill in County Galway. It was designed and cut eighteen inches deep, two hundred eighty feet long, sixty feet at its widest, and filled with about seventeen tons of plaster. The Berkshire White Horse, which dates from before the English and Viking battles, was the scene of King Alfred's encounter with the Viking invaders. See more »

Quotes

Guthrum: Your Christ cannot be like our love god Frey. When maids see him they blush.
Alfred: My god is life, eternal! Your gods are dead.
Guthrum: Not dead. They speak in thunder, and in battle! In birth cry, and from the loins from lovers! Here are my gods, they were your gods of old. Men say all Saxon kings are sons of Odin.
Alfred: They lie.
Guthrum: He's a cruel god, lusting for power and knowledge. He was hanged upon a tree to prove himself and to find wisdom.
Alfred: He found nothing. Your gods teach nothing. They have no wisdom.
Guthrum: They have ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in MGM 40th Anniversary (1964) See more »

User Reviews

 
A personal fave
7 January 1999 | by Speedy-21See all my reviews

Though I'm quite aware of this film's shortcomings (length and the multitude of exotic names, etc.), I must say that I think Leonard Maltin does this film a disservice. It accurately portrays some of the most important events in English history, and also paints a fine portrait of a monarch torn between earthly passions and the desire for spiritual purity. It is only by truly balancing these two forces that a man can succeed, and Alfred did so.

The conflicting forces in the film also symbolize Alfred's inner struggle -- the church representing his spiritual desires and the Danes standing for the passions and lusts of the physical world. Certainly the Battle of Athelney Marsh, one of the pivotal events in British history, is stirringly portrayed, particularly when the peasants and commoners rise up to save their king. This film, despite its flaws and its abysmal box office performance, remains a personal favorite of mine.


27 of 28 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 27 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 October 1969 (Hong Kong) See more »

Also Known As:

A King Is Born See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Mono (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Your Next Binge Watch Awaits

Looking for something to watch? Check out IMDb's "What to Watch" series to find out what's really worth watching.



Recently Viewed