Author Topic: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of Scot  (Read 26177 times)

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Offline BobAtchison

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How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of Scot
« on: January 07, 2005, 09:58:06 AM »
I loved that love with Vanessa Redgrave - especially the scene where she lands on the beach in her beautiful white gown.  I have always wondered how accurate that movie was - can anyone comment?

Bob

Offline Helen_Azar

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2005, 10:15:03 AM »
Quote
I loved that love with Vanessa Redgrave - especially the scene where she lands on the beach in her beautiful white gown.  I have always wondered how accurate that movie was - can anyone comment?

Bob
 Well, just based on the "Elizabeth meeting Mary in the woods for a chat" scene, I would say not very  ;).  But it's not really fair to judge the whole movie by one scene... I just happen to be very picky about that kind of stuff  ::)

Offline Silja

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2005, 11:39:38 AM »
There are a couple of other things in it which aren't accurate - for instance, as far as I know Mary was not given the choice by her brother to either stand trial or be exiled. In reality she was put under arrest and then escaped. But I quite like the film for the excellent actors and the atmosphere.

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2005, 05:33:51 PM »
Ian Holm is in it as Rizzio he is so young - Glenda Jackson looks even better as Elizabeth in MQofS than she did in the ElizabethR series.  Vanessa looks breathtakingly beautiful.  She was great in Isadora as well.

Offline ChristineM

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2005, 06:11:32 PM »
'Mary Queen of Scots the Movie' I am sorry to say was, for me, a disappointment.   There is no doubt about the calibre of the cast.   The visuals, though beautiful, could have been much more dramatic, the script was mediocre, but it was the staged meeting of Mary and Elizabeth that completely ruined it for me.  

I fail to understand a film Director's need to leave some kind of personal mark on such a movie.   The two women never met - indeed this fact heightened the fascination the one had for the other.

When the (hi)story is great enough, what right has anyone, three and a half centuries later, to change it for the sake of what - a personal notion or fantasy?

It is sad to think that hundreds, perhaps thousands of people watched that film and because of somebody's whim, believe in an event which never took place.  

What makes it worse, is that the meeting never having taken place was critical to the outcome.   Would Elizabeth really have managed to delude herself into believing that she was not signing Mary's death warrant, had the two 'beloved cousins' actually met?    How different might have been the course of Scottish/English/British history?  

Helen, you are not 'being picky'.    You, like me, only wanted historical accuracy.

tsaria    

Offline Helen_Azar

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2005, 06:23:17 PM »
Quote

What makes it worse, is that the meeting never having taken place was critical to the outcome.   Would Elizabeth really have managed to delude herself into believing that she was not signing Mary's death warrant, had the two 'beloved cousins' actually met?    How different might have been the course of Scottish/English/British history?  

Helen, you are not 'being picky'.    You, like me, only wanted historical accuracy.

tsaria    


tsaria, it's interesting that you said that because earlier, on the "Finally!" thread where were also discussing this film, I made this posting:

"...I think in real life, Elizabeth purposely avoided meeting her cousin in person because she may have had a feeling that eventually she would "have to do what she must" and it would be easier for her to deal with it if she never actually met her... "

I agree that had Elizabeth actually met Mary she may not have been able to bring herself to execute her and the course of British history would have gone in a different direction perhaps. On the other hand, Elizabeth was able to order the execution of Essex, her favourite, so maybe she still would have done it with Mary, even if she met her... We just don't know....

Offline Martyn

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2005, 09:32:28 AM »
I don't think that this film can really be viewed any more seriously than a piece of entertainment.  As is so often the case with film, fact is manipulated or indeed substituted with fiction for dramatic effect.
The meeting of the two queens is something that every fan of either, wishes had taken place.  It didn't.
I liked Vanessa Redgrave in this role as I think that she suggested Mary's mercurial nature quite well, in addition to having the right kind of look physically.  
Quite recently we had a 2 part TV dramatisation of Mary's life and that of her son James I and VI that was shown on BBC 2, and I think was written by Jimmy McGovern.  If I recall correctly it was called 'Gunpowder, Treason and Plot' or somethinhg like it.  It should have been called 'Nonsense, Rubbish and Tripe' because that is what it was, despite having the excellent Robert Carlyle as James.  Looked cheap and was silly in the extreme - a total waste of TV time.  If it comes your way, don't bother....
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Offline ChristineM

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2005, 11:05:33 AM »
Dear Helen

My apologies for missing your point.   Happily we are in agreement.   It belongs to one of the great imponderables of history 'If''.

Dear Martyn

I agree with your comments re Vanessa Redgrave.   The film was well cast, pity about its lack of substance.

The excruciable 'Gunpowder, Treason and Plot' I thought was unviewable.   Although, I have to say I am pleased to read your remarks about Robert Carlyle - he is my neighbour.

tsaria

Offline Silja

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2005, 12:19:38 PM »
But compared with "Mary of Scotland" from the 30s with Katharine Hepburn "Mary Queen of Scots" is still quite good  ::). Has anyone seen "Mary of Scotland"? Reminds me a bit of "Rasputin and the Empress". No historical accuracy at all  :o  

Offline Helen_Azar

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2005, 12:20:46 PM »
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But compared with "Mary of Scotland" from the 30s with Katharine Hepburn "Mary Queen of Scots" is still quite good  ::). Has anyone seen "Mary of Scotland"? Reminds me a bit of "Rasputin and the Empress". No historical accuracy at all  :o  


I didn't even know Katherine Hepburn ever played Mary Stuart! It's too bad it sounds so hockie  :(.

Offline Silja

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2005, 12:22:25 PM »
It's still interesting to watch  ;)

Offline Helen_Azar

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2005, 12:25:40 PM »
I don't think I could deal with it if it's anything like 'Rasputin and the Empress'.... Kate Hepburn or no  ;)

Offline Silja

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2005, 12:27:59 PM »
Ha ha ;D

Offline Martyn

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2005, 10:58:13 AM »
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Dear Helen

My apologies for missing your point.   Happily we are in agreement.   It belongs to one of the great imponderables of history 'If''.

Dear Martyn

I agree with your comments re Vanessa Redgrave.   The film was well cast, pity about its lack of substance.

The excruciable 'Gunpowder, Treason and Plot' I thought was unviewable.   Although, I have to say I am pleased to read your remarks about Robert Carlyle - he is my neighbour.

tsaria


Tsaria, he is your neighbour!  Goodness me, I had no idea that you kept such exalted company!  He is such a fine actor and he really laboured as James I.  I particularly loved the scene where the Royal family arrived for the Coronation in an open top carriage (such a thing did not exist) that looked like it had escaped from the wonderful world of Barbie!  I thought that I would die laughing!  It truly was appalling and written from the most curious point of view; I had the feeling that Jimmy McGovern had a few Scottish Nationalist axes to grind.  So be it, politics apart, it looked appalling and every inch the scaled down lame excuse of a venture that it was.  Ridiculous.
I've never seen the Katherine Hepburn version, must be from the thirties - too butch for Mary, who was the personification of french womanhood...........
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Offline Elisabeth

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Re: How accurate is the movie "Mary Queen of
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2005, 07:57:41 AM »
One of the major inaccuracies in this movie was the portrayal of Mary's relationship with Bothwell. In the movie Bothwell is supposedly the love of Mary's life, whereas in reality, there's no historical evidence that she ever loved him, and a lot of proof to the contrary, in so far as she never once mentioned his name or inquired after his fate (also tragic) during all her years of captivity in England.

I still have a sentimental attachment to this film, however, because I first saw it as a little girl and was overwhelmed by the sheer beauty of the opening scenes of Mary in France. The sets and costumes were gorgeous, and Vanessa Redgrave was an excellent choice to play Mary.

I love Glenda Jackson as Elizabeth, although I'm probably alone in wishing that here she had kept on that false nose she wore in "Elizabeth R" - I just have a little trouble suspending  my disbelief when Good Queen Bess sports a snub nose! All in all, I think "Elizabeth R" was  a much better production, despite the fact that it had much less money and resources spent on it.    
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