Anne of the Thousand Days

1969

Action / Biography / Drama / History

37
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 42%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 83%
IMDb Rating 7.6 10 5621

Synopsis


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Cast

Elizabeth Taylor as Masked Courtesan
Richard Burton as King Henry VIII
Kate Burton as Serving Maid
Geneviève Bujold as Anne Boleyn
720p 1080p
932.48 MB
1280*720
English
PG
24.000 fps
2hr 25 min
P/S 3 / 6
2.05 GB
1920*1080
English
PG
24.000 fps
2hr 25 min
P/S 2 / 7

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by bkoganbing 9 / 10

"Mine Will Be Blood Well Spent"

Henry VIII's male chauvinistic desire to begat a male heir for the throne of England is a tale often told from many points of view. In Anne of a Thousand Days it's told from the point of view of Anne Boleyn, second wife of Henry VIII and mother of the infant child who became Elizabeth I.

Anne Boleyn, a high spirited young lass of 18, catches Henry VIII's eye at court. One of his previous dalliances was with her older sister Mary and that paid off well for the Boleyn family. Father Tom sees riches and glory even more and persuades her to really keep the king panting.

Anne succeeds all too well. Henry divorces Catherine of Aragon and marries Anne. But all he begats is another daughter. And Henry still wants a son and he's got an eye on another. It all ends tragically for the Boleyn family.

It's important to remember that as the film opens Henry VIII having caught sight of Anne at his court denies permission for her to marry some young lord whom she is in love with and vice versa. Had he looked elsewhere, had he moved on, all this might never have come to pass.

Anne of the Thousand Days took 21 years to come to the screen. It ran on Broadway for a year in 1948-1949 and starred Rex Harrison as Henry VIII. Richard Burton joins a great list of actors who've portrayed Henry VIII on the screen. Probably the young Charles Laughton did him best, but Burton is certainly fine.

Genevieve Bujold in her screen debut is a stunning and fetching Anne, too fetching for her own good. Poor kid though, in other than a monarchist society that was becoming more absolute during Henry's reign, she'd have married the man of her dreams and lived happily ever after.

Anthony Quayle is a fine Cardinal Woolsey though I prefer Orson Welles in A Man for All Seasons. Michael Hordern as Thomas Boleyn destroys more than one member of his family through his own ambition.

Irene Papas makes a tragic Catherine of Aragon. By all accounts Catherine was a pious woman who had incredible rotten luck with her pregnancies. Only daughter Mary survived who grew up to be the Queen known as Bloody Mary. She settled some accounts when she became Queen.

I think the best supporting portrayal is that of John Colicos as Thomas Cromwell. This Cromwell was the great uncle of the more well known Oliver Cromwell. Oliver has his supporters and detractors, but I've never seen a good word in any history books about Uncle Tom. Colicos has him pegged just right as a serpentine intriguer. By the way after the period of this film is over, Thomas Cromwell made one too many intrigues and got on Henry VIII's wrong side. People usually didn't live long after that and Cromwell was no exception.

When he wrote Anne of the Thousand Days, Maxwell Anderson grew up in a society of law. I think a fine appreciation of that fact comes into the moral of the story. Even an absolute monarch has to obey laws or no one is safe. Until Henry VIII was off this mortal coil, no one was.

Reviewed by TrevorAclea 8 / 10

Grand entertainment

Anne of the Thousand Days is an enjoyably lavish entertainment from the days when duelling kings and commoners were all the rage at the box-office – Beckett, A Man For All Seasons, The Lion in Winter – before Cromwell and Mary Queen of Scots all but killed off the genre. As history, its better at the general details than the specifics, but it's magnificently staged and not without some dry wit and humour ("We used the incest excuse last time. We can't make a habit of it."), most of it intentional – there's not a writer alive who wouldn't be aware of the effect that giving Richard Burton dialogue like "Divorce is like killing – after the first time it's easy" would have on an audience. There's even some pathos in the final image of Henry callously riding off to his next bride as his last one's blood stains the hay on the executioner's scaffold. Burton is on good form before he lurched into drunken autopilot mode, and Genevieve Bujold does well as the alternately innocent and vindictive Anne Boleyn. Even the usually arch and hammy John Colicos is fine as the overambitious Thomas Cromwell, but it's the eternally undervalued Anthony Quayle who steals the acting honours as Cardinal Wolsey, even making you feel for the old monster as he falls from favour.

Reviewed by Caledonia Twin #1 10 / 10

A Classic! Worth Watching for Performance of Geneviève Bujold!

Despite historical inaccuracies necessarily prevalent in historical dramas (i.e. not documentaries), this film is exquisitely conceived, written, directed, and performed. In my opinion, it is perhaps one of the best historical dramas ever produced, and both Bujold and Burton are remarkable. It's a pity that this film is not more widely known. I highly recommend it.

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