In her youth, Mary is sent to France to marry the next king. When he dies, she returns to Scotland and marries Lord Darnley, whom she soon realizes she dislikes. She falls in love with the Earl of Bothwell and they plot Darnley’s death. Meanwhile, her cousin Elizabeth I becomes the Queen of England.
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Love the cinematography, wardrobe, sound production, and all the interesting little details: puppet plays, maids dancing with lighted torches for wedding & her majesty taking a peek while leak. The storyline and characters are engaging, however the Mary (according to this movie) is not prepared to be a queen.
Something of a revelation. I admit to having very low expectations but this far exceeded them. Camille Rutherford is quite wonderful in what is largely a claustrophobic domestic drama framed by mud and mist. The version of Dylan's 'Changing of the Guards' that is sung over the credits is a wonder in itself.
2.5 Rutherford holds this film together; it's great to see her fighting on horseback. Jarring use of hand-held camera, though also some lovely interior shots. Darnley makes a believable husband, and his illness is handled well. Some major storytelling problems bog down the England-Scotland action sequences. Appreciated the French voice over, and Mehdi Dehbi as Riccio is wonderful. Very odd music choices.
A tragic story from a turbulent period of history. Despite some effective production choices it doesn't quite maintain the interest or pace. Camille Rutherford's performance saves it from being an otherwise overlong, stodgy film.
Bit of a mixed bag. Lead character never convinced, but brother memorably sneery, turgid historical drama in places, in others the drama snared and snarled. The epistolary basis of the film gave it some foundation, but it all slipped into vagueness at the end. Fitting, perhaps.
Imbach's stately film represents a refreshingly raw approach to period drama. The handling of some of the picture's more conventional elements feels a little awkward at times, but its nightmarish episodes of juddering camera-work, hushed voiceovers and use of Gubaidulina's marvellous music result in some exhilarating moments. Also pleasing is the attention paid to quirky historical details.