Favorite movies and shows having to do with history. If you have any suggestions for other movies and shows or just want to comment please feel free to. I’d love to hear from you.
The Tudors (Show)
Season One of The Tudors chronicles the period of Henry VIII’s reign in which his effectiveness as King is tested by international conflicts as well as political intrigue in his own court, while the pressure of fathering a male heir compels him to reject his wife Katherine of Aragon in favour of Anne Boleyn. He also has a string of affairs, and fathers an illegitimate son with his mistress Elizabeth “Bessie” Blount, Henry FitzRoy, who later dies.
Season Two finds Henry as the head of the Church of England, the result of his break with the Catholic Church over its refusal to grant him a divorce from Katherine. During his battle with Rome, he secretly marries a pregnant Anne. Anne’s own failure to produce a son dooms her as Henry’s attention shifts toward Jane Seymour.
Season Three focuses on Henry’s marriages to Jane Seymour and Anne of Cleves, the birth of his son Edward VI, his ruthless suppression of the Pilgrimage of Grace, the downfall of Thomas Cromwell, and the beginnings of Henry’s relationship with the “dangerous” Katherine Howard.
Season Four focuses on Henry’s ill-fated marriage to Katherine Howard, his uncommonly successful final marriage with Katherine Parr, an attempted invasion of France and the question of the kingdom’s leadership after Henry’s death.
The Borgias (Show)
The Borgias is the sordid saga of one of the most remarkable and legendary families in history. Set in 15th century Italy at the height of the Renaissance, The Borgias chronicles the corrupt rise of patriarch Rodrigo Borgia (Academy Award® winner Jeremy Irons) to the papacy, where he proceeds to commit every sin in the book to amass and retain power, influence and enormous wealth for himself and his family. The unbounded audacity of this original crime family went on to inspire Machiavelli’s The Prince and Mario Puzo’s The Godfather. Don’t miss a minute of the lavish, sexy, scandalous drama from the creative mind of Academy Award® winner Neil Jordan.
Who are the Borgias: Outsiders from Spain, the Borgias go up against the most powerful and established families in Renaissance Italy and come out on top. Through the masterful use of bribery, extortion, blackmail, and shocking forms of torture and murder, Rodrigo Borgia rises to the position of pope, the most venerated in the Western World. Aiding him in his endeavors are his sons Cesare, a ruthless operator who yearns fruitlessly to be released from the priesthood, and Juan, a feckless dilettante whom Rodrigo appoints to head the papal armies. Daughter Lucrezia and son Joffre are married off in early adolescence to members of powerful rival families – pawns in their family’s fortunes. Waging their own heated contest for Rodrigo’s affections are Vanozza, his long-time mistress and mother of his children, and the younger Giulia Farnese, whose cunning is matched only by her astonishing beauty.
One of the big Elizabethan-era films of 1998, Shekhar Kapur’s Elizabeth serves up a brimming goblet of religious tension, political conspiracy, sex, violence, and war. England in 1554 is in financial and religious turmoil as the ailing Queen “Bloody” Mary attempts to restore Catholicism as the national faith. She has no heir, and her greatest fear–that her Protestant half-sister Elizabeth will assume the throne after her death–is realized. Still, the late Queen Mary has her loyalists. The newly crowned Elizabeth finds herself knee-deep in dethroning schemes while also dodging assassination attempts. Her advisers (including Sir William Cecil, superbly played by Richard Attenborough) beg her to marry any one of her would-be suitors to stabilize England’s empire. No matter that she already has a lover. The passionate Robert Dudley (Joseph Fiennes) is married, however, and shows he cannot stand up to the growing strength of the Queen. With the help of her aide Walsingham (Geoffrey Rush), Elizabeth strikes against her enemies before they get to her first. But her rise ultimately entails rejecting love and marriage to redefine herself as the indisputable Virgin Queen. Cate Blanchett’s Oscar-nominated performance as the naive and vibrant princess who becomes the stubborn and knowing queen is both severe and sympathetic. Her ethereal, pale beauty is equal parts fire and ice, her delivery of such lines as “There will be only one mistress here and no master!” expressed with command rather than hysterics. As striking as Blanchett’s performance is the film’s lavish and dramatic production design. The cold, dark sets paired with the lush costuming show the golden age of England’s monarchy emerging from the Middle Ages. Rich velvet brushes over the dank stones while power is achieved at any price, and with such attention to physical detail, Elizabeth fully immerses you into its compelling chronicle of pioneering feminism and revisionist history.
Elizabeth The Golden Age (Movie)
Reprising the roles they originated in seven-time Academy Award (R)-nominated Elizabeth, Cate Blanchett and Geoffrey Rush return for a gripping historical thriller laced with treachery and romance-Elizabeth: The Golden Age. Joining them in the epic… Reprising the roles they originated in seven-time Academy Award (R)-nominated Elizabeth, Cate Blanchett and Geoffrey Rush return for a gripping historical thriller laced with treachery and romance-Elizabeth: The Golden Age. Joining them in the epic is Clive Owen as Sir Walter Raleigh, a dashing seafarer and newfound temptation for Elizabeth. Elizabeth: The Golden Age finds Queen Elizabeth I (Oscar (R)-winner Cate Blanchett) facing bloodlust for her throne and familial betrayal. Growing keenly aware of the changing religious and political tides of late 16th century Europe, Elizabeth finds her rule openly challenged by the Spanish King Philip II (Jordi Molla)-with his powerful army and sea-dominating armada-determined to restore England to Catholicism. Preparing to go to war to defend her empire, Elizabeth struggles to balance ancient royal duties with an unexpected vulnerability in her love for Raleigh. But he remains forbidden for a queen who has sworn body and soul to her country. Unable and unwilling to pursue her love, Elizabeth encourages her favorite lady-in-waiting, Bess (Abbie Cornish), to befriend Raleigh to keep him near. But this strategy forces Elizabeth to observe their growing intimacy. As she charts her course abroad, her trusted advisor, Sir Francis Walsingham (Academy Award (R) winner Geoffrey Rush), continues his masterful puppetry of Elizabeth’s court at home-and her campaign to solidify absolute power. Through an intricate spy network, Walsingham uncovers an assassination plot that could topple the throne. But as he unmasks traitors that may include Elizabeth’s own cousin Mary Stuart (Samantha Morton), he unknowingly sets England up for destruction. The Elizabeth: The Golden Age trailer tells the thrilling tale of an era…the story of one woman’s crusade to control love, crush enemies and secure her position as a beloved icon of the western world.
The Pillars of the Earth (Show)
The Pillars of the Earth is set against a backdrop of war, religious strife and power struggles which tears lives and families apart. In that time, there rises a magnificent Cathedral in Kingsbridge. Against the backdrop, love-stories entwine: Tom, the master builder, Aliena, the noblewoman, the sadistic Lord William, Philip, the prior of Kingsbridge, Jack, the artist in stone work and Ellen, the woman from the forest who casts a curse. At once, this is a sensuous and enduring love story and an epic that shines with the fierce spirit of a passionate age. Follett masterfully weaves these stories through political turmoil of 12th century England, creating a relevant and viable world for today’s audience and for generations to come.
The Duchess (Movie)
Georgiana Spencer became Duchess of Devonshire on her marriage to the Duke in 1774, at the height of the Georgian period, a period of fashion, decadence, and political change. Spirited and adored by the public at large she quickly found her marriage to be a disappointment, defined by her duty to produce a male heir and the Duke’s philandering and callous indifference to her. She befriends Lady Bess but finds she is once again betrayed by her husband who wields his power with the three eventually living uncomfortably together. Against this background, and with the pressures of an unfaithful husband,strict social pressures and constant public scrutiny, Georgiana falls passionately in love with Charles Grey, a rising young Whig politician. However, despite his ongoing liaison with Lady Bess, the Duke refuses to allow her to continue the affair and threatens to take her children from her.
Robin Hood (Movie)
Birth of a legend. Following King Richard’s death in France, archer Robin Longstride, along with Will Scarlett, Alan-a-Dale and Little John, returns to England. They encounter the dying Robert of Locksley, whose party was ambushed by treacherous Godfrey, who hopes to facilitate a French invasion of England. Robin promises the dying knight he will return his sword to his father Walter in Nottingham. Here Walter encourages him to impersonate the dead man to prevent his land being confiscated by the crown, and he finds himself with Marian, a ready-made wife. Hoping to stir baronial opposition to weak King John and allow an easy French take-over, Godfrey worms his way into the king’s service as Earl Marshal of England and brutally invades towns under the pretext of collecting Royal taxes. Can Robin navigate the politics of barons, royals, traitors, and the French?
The Young Victoria (Movie)
Dominated by her possessive mother and her bullying consort,Conroy, since childhood, teen-aged Victoria refuses to allow them the power of acting as her regent in the last days of her uncle, William IV’s rule. Her German cousin Albert is encouraged to court her for solely political motives but, following her accession at age eighteen, finds he is falling for her and is dismayed at her reliance on trusty premier Melbourne. Victoria is impressed by Albert’s philanthropy which is akin to her own desire to help her subjects. However her loyalty to Melbourne, perceived as a self-seeker, almost causes a constitutional crisis and it is Albert who helps restore her self-confidence.She proposes and they marry, Albert proving himself not only a devoted spouse,prepared to take an assassin’s bullet for her, but an agent of much-needed reform, finally endorsed by an admiring Melbourne.