Biography / Drama / History

Elizabeth (1998) download yts

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 82%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 87%
IMDb Rating 7.5 10 75889  


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Cate Blanchett as Elisabeth I
Geoffrey Rush as Sir Francis Walsingham
Christopher Eccleston as Duke of Norfolk
Joseph Fiennes as Robert Dudley
720p 1080p
1.49 GB
23.976 fps
2hr 4 min
P/S Unknown
2.36 GB
23.976 fps
2hr 4 min
P/S Unknown

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by CCO-3 10 / 10

Creative camera work

During the opening credits the camera hovers high above three people being burned at the stake, what an angle, as the fire consumes them in a maelstrom. The cineamatography was so incredibly creative, very Hitchcockian. One need not possess any knowledge of history to make sense of the plot and story. Like a good mystery there were subtle nuances. Glances between characters that foreshadowed events and interactions to come, such as the woman that betrays Norfolk, and the child that inadvertently reveals his father's hiding place. The story wasn't exactly historically accurate, but it got my 15-year-old interested in Elizabethen England. Call it artistic license. The movie was so lush, so complex that I easily saw it twice without becoming bored. Terrific acting, fabulous costumes, great staging.

Reviewed by Max_cinefilo89 9 / 10

Queen Blanchett

The Academy Awards ceremony of 1999 angered many people: Shakespeare in Love, albeit a very smart and funny film, robbed the superior Saving Private Ryan of the Best Picture Oscar; Roberto Benigni beat Edward Norton in the Best Actor category (though it was the Italian star's behavior, rather than his performance, that irritated those attending the event); and Gwyneth Paltrow, who wasn't actually bad in Shakespeare, walked away with the Best Actress award, depriving Cate Blanchett of the recognition she should have received for her revelatory work in Elizabeth.

This film, the first in what the director hopes will be a trilogy (the second installment was released in 2007), covers the early years of Elizabeth I's reign, from her harsh upbringing to the decision to call herself "the Virgin Queen". To describe her situation as tough is an understatement: she was a Protestant monarch in a largely Catholic kingdom, several covert groups wanted her dead and foreign sovereigns kept asking for her hand in marriage, without ever succeeding, for the only man she loved was also the only one she couldn't have.

Conspiracies and unhappy romances: two unusual ingredients for a period drama. And that is exactly why the film succeeds: in the mind of director Shekhar Kapur, this is not the usual costume film where events are observed with a static eye and what might be perceived by some as excessive slowness (Quentin Tarantino's infamous rant about "Merchant-Ivory sh*t" is aimed at those productions); instead, we get a lively, vibrant piece of work, with the camera sweeping through the gorgeous sets and leering at the exquisite costumes while recounting the grand story. And what a story: the thriller aspect aims to please viewers who find the genre a bit lacking in the tension department, whereas the Queen's doomed love affair with Joseph Fiennes' Earl of Leicester (a plot element to which the BBC miniseries from 2005, starring Helen Mirren and Jeremy Irons, is a sort of sequel) is the polar opposite of the sanitized, passionless romantic tales that tend to feature in other period films.

Good-looking technique and strong storytelling would, however, be useless if the title role wasn't played by an equally great actress, and Pakur found the perfect Elizabeth in Blanchett: an odd choice she may have seemed (she was a complete unknown in Hollywood prior to being cast in this movie), but the performance she delivers is nothing short of astonishing. Doubtful, determined, passionate, naive, heartbroken, firm and charismatic - she is quite simply the best on-screen incarnation of Elizabeth in the long history of biopics. The supporting cast (Fiennes, Geoffrey Rush, Christopher Eccleston, Richard Attenborough) is also excellent, as expected from British and Australian thespians, but it is Blanchett who dominates the entire picture. Shame the Academy didn't take notice.

Reviewed by EThompsonUMD 9 / 10

One of the finest historical dramas in years.

As far as Academy Award recognition is concerned, 'Elizabeth' was unfortunately released in the same year (1998) as the much slicker, more crowd-pleasing 'Shakespeare in Love,' a fine comic film but as much over-praised as 'Elizabeth' was overlooked. It certainly borders on the absurd, if not the criminal, that Gwyneth Paltrow's simpering, one-note performance as Viola was handed the Best Actress Award over Cate Blanchett's truly magnificent performance in the title role of 'Elizabeth,' a film whose tracing of Elizabeth's transformation from teenage frolicker to commanding 'Virgin Queen' presented an enormous challenge of acting range that Blanchett met with aplomb.

Curiously, 'Shakespeare in Love' and 'Elizabeth' not only share the presence of Elizabeth I as an historical character, albeit at opposite ends of her nearly 50 year reign, but also two prominent cast members: Joseph Fiennes and Geoffrey Rush. Although Fiennes' role as the Earl of Leicester, Elizabeth's lover prior to her Virgin Queen persona days, is smaller (and far less winning) than his lead role in 'Shakespeare in Love,' he again cuts a convincing figure in 16th century costume. On the other hand, Geoffrey Rush's performance as Sir Francis Walsingham, Elizabeth's utterly ruthless yet completely loyal bodyguard and Machiavellian tutor, is endlessly and hypnotically fascinating – a performance that steals movies in movies whose leads are less arresting than Ms. Blanchett.

Yet, in an ironic reversal of Hollywood's usual denigration of comedy in favor of 'serious' drama, it was Rush's much smaller comic performance in 'Shakespeare' that secured him the 1998 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Ordinarily, I'd applaud such recognition of comic art and talent, but in this instance it represents another miscarriage of justice. Rush's tone and bearing as he delivers line after line of blood-chilling dialog make Walsingham a character I expect never to forget. 'You were Norfolk,' he responds to the protests of the insufferably arrogant Duke of Norfolk, Elizabeth's chief nemesis, as he leads him away to the Tower, 'the dead have no titles.'

Of course, Elizabeth gets off many a great line of her own, as in her unforgettable final rejection of Leicester: 'I am not your Elizabeth. I am no man's Elizabeth. I shall have one mistress here. And no master!' A little later she gives license to Walsingham to proceed with the political cleansing of the realm with a laconic transcendence of her 'womanly' emotions: 'let it all be done.' Still another memorable line marks the final stage of her political education and her departure from the wishy-washy diplomacy represented by Lord Burleigh (her former chief minister, finely played by Sir Richard Attenborough in his final film role): 'Observe, Lord Burleigh, I am married … to England.'

Elizabeth ultimately forges a political philosophy that combines elements of Walsingham's cynical wariness with an ideal of self-abnegating service to England ('my people'). She envisions a strong, secular England capable of rising above the internecine religious strife initiated by her father's departure from the Roman Catholic Church and depicted in graphic horror in the film's opening sequence. In so doing she succeeds in mapping out England's course toward a stable, advanced society whose history would include a lengthy period of world domination. This film does full justice to the dilemmas of church-state conflict, to the complex character of the queen herself, and to the rich historical milieu that produced her. It is one of the finest historical dramas to have appeared in decades.

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