The Young Victoria (2009)

The Young Victoria (2009)

GENRESBiography,Drama,History,Romance
LANGEnglish,German
ACTOR
Emily BluntRupert FriendPaul BettanyMiranda Richardson
DIRECTOR
Jean-Marc Vallée

SYNOPSICS

The Young Victoria (2009) is a English,German movie. Jean-Marc Vallée has directed this movie. Emily Blunt,Rupert Friend,Paul Bettany,Miranda Richardson are the starring of this movie. It was released in 2009. The Young Victoria (2009) is considered one of the best Biography,Drama,History,Romance movie in India and around the world.

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 Prime Minister 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 also an agent of much-needed reform, finally endorsed by an admiring Melbourne.

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The Young Victoria (2009) Reviews

  • A touching romance and a gripping human drama

    JamesHitchcock2009-03-23

    Apart from having the longest reign in British history (63 years), Queen Victoria also holds two other distinctions. She was, apart from our current Queen, the oldest ever British monarch, living to the age of 81. And she was also the youngest ever British (as opposed to English or Scottish) monarch, coming to the throne as a girl of eighteen. And yet whenever television or the cinema make a programme or film about her, they seem far more interested in the older Victoria than they do in the young girl; the version of Victoria with which modern audiences will probably be most familiar is Judi Dench in "Mrs Brown". "The Young Victoria" tries to redress the balance by showing us the events surrounding her accession and the early years of her reign. It has the rare distinction of being produced by a former Royal, Sarah Duchess of York, whose daughter Princess Beatrice makes a brief appearance as an extra. There are three main strands to the plot. The first concerns the intrigues of Victoria's mother, the Duchess of Kent, a highly unpopular figure even with her own daughter, largely because of the influence of her adviser Sir John Conroy, who was widely rumoured to be her lover. (According to one unfounded rumour he, and not the late Duke of Kent, was Victoria's natural father). The second strand concerns the growing romance between Victoria and her German cousin Prince Albert, and the attempts of King Leopold of Belgium, who was uncle to both of them, to influence this romance. (Leopold's hope was to increase the prestige of the House of Saxe-Coburg, to which both he and Albert belonged). The third concerns one of the strangest episodes in British political history, the Bedchamber Crisis of 1839, when supporters of the Tory Party (which had traditionally supported a strong monarchy) rioted because the young Queen was perceived to favour the Whig Party and their leader Lord Melbourne, even though the Whigs had historically supported a quasi-republican system of government, with the monarch reduced to a figurehead. Scriptwriter Julian Fellowes is known for his Conservative views, and at times I wondered if this may have coloured his treatment of political themes, as he seems to lean to the side of the Tories, the predecessors of the modern Conservative party. Their leader Robert Peel is shown as statesmanlike and dignified, whereas Melbourne, for all his dash and charm, is shown as devious and uninterested in social reform. There may be some truth is these characterisations, but Fellowes glosses over the fact that only a few years earlier the Tories had opposed the Reform Act, which ended the corrupt electoral system of rotten boroughs, and that they had benefited from William IV's unconstitutional dismissal of a Whig administration. Lessons in dynastic and constitutional history do not always transfer well to the cinema screen, and this one contains its share of inaccuracies. Prince Albert, for example, was not injured in Edward Oxford's attempt on Victoria's life, and Melbourne (in his late fifties at the time of Victoria's accession) was not as youthful as he is portrayed here by Paul Bettany. King William IV certainly disliked the Duchess of Kent (who was his sister-in-law), but I doubt if he would have gone so far as to bawl abuse at her during a state banquet, as he is shown doing here. I also failed to understand the significance of the scene in which the Duchess and Conroy try to force Victoria to sign a "Regency Order"; the Duchess's constitutional position was made clear by the Regency Act 1830, which provided that she would become Regent if her daughter was still under eighteen at the time of her accession. No piece of paper signed by Victoria could have altered the provisions of the Act. There are also occasional infelicities. In one early scene we see Victoria and Albert playing chess while comparing themselves to pawns being moved around a chessboard, a metaphor so hackneyed that the whole scene should have come complete with a "Danger! Major cliché ahead!" warning. Yet in spite of scenes like this, I came to enjoy the film. There were some good performances, especially from Miranda Richardson as the scheming Duchess and Mark Strong as the obnoxious Conroy. It is visually very attractive, being shot in sumptuous style we have come to associate with British historical drama. Jim Broadbent gives an amusing turn as King William, although he does occasionally succumb to the temptation of going over the top. (Although not as disastrously over the top as he was in "Moulin Rouge"). The main reason for the film's success, however, is the performances of Emily Blunt and Rupert Friend as the two young lovers Victoria and Albert. Blunt is probably more attractive than Victoria was in real life, but in her delightful portrayal the Queen is no longer the old lady of the popular imagination, the black-clad Widow of Windsor who was perpetually not amused, but a determined, strong-minded and loving young woman. Her love for Albert, and their happy family life together, was one of the main reasons why the monarchy succeeded in reestablishing itself in the affections of the British people. (With the exception of George III, Victoria's Hanoverian ancestors had been notoriously lacking in the matrimonial virtues). Blunt and Friend make "The Young Victoria" a touching romance and a gripping human drama as well as an exploration of a key period in British history. 8/10

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  • Better than I expected

    graham-1672009-03-10

    I went into this expecting not to like it; I figured it would be terribly worthy and earnest, and rather plodding and dull. It's actually far better than that, and I found myself really enjoying it. I don't know too much about Queen Victoria beyond what most know - married to Albert, who died young, and she mourned him ever after. Seeing the circumstances she grew up under was fascinating; in fact I found myself wishing I'd seen more of the story, and I imagine we may see a sequel at some point. Visually the film is stunning. The sets and costumes are incredibly lavish without being too gaudy and over the top. The acting is top notch from everybody involved. In a word, it was great!

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  • To be Blunt, haha, Emily B does beautiful work in this lovely bit of historical drama

    inkblot112010-01-27

    Princess Victoria (Emily Blunt) is in line for the throne of England. The present King William (Jim Broadbent) is not well and may not live long. However, Vicky's scheming mother, The Duchess of Kent (Miranda Richandson) and her aide, John (Mark Strong) want to force Victoria to sign papers declaring them to be the "regents" until she is older, since she is only 20 years of age. The young lady refuses, despite John slapping her around. It is another sign that Victoria has a strong will and deep love for her country. Yet, when William does pass away, shortly after her 21st birthday, Victoria knows she has a heavy duty before her. First, she must surround herself with the "right" advisers to govern wisely. She chooses handsome Lord Melbourne (Paul Bettany) who, although an older man, is mentioned as a suitor for Vicky. Which brings us to the young queen's second major decision. Sooner than not, the young queen should select her future mate, as it will bring stability to her life and to those of the kingdom, for an heir must appear in the coming years. Meanwhile, in Germany, some distant relatives of the British royal family are hatching some plans as well. Handsome Prince Albert (Rupert Friend), of the Saxon-Coburg dynasty, is prodded by his father to court the young English royal. Once he arrives at the palace, he is smitten and the feeling seems to be mutual. But, since he is a minor player on the map of royal match-making, can he succeed in winning her heart? This is a lovely film, made even better by a completely winning performance by Emily Blunt as Victoria. Yes, she is beautiful but it is her intelligent reading of the role that scores mightily. Friend, too, does well, as do the other actors, including Broadbent, Richardson, Bettany, Strong (what a repulsive role!), and the rest. Also, the movie is gorgeously shot, costumed, and set, making it a visual treat in every way. If anything is lacking, it is an extra dose of dazzle, as the film seems a bit too straightforward and prosaic, at times, with a somewhat unimaginative edit. However, this is only a minor, minor point of argument in an overall very successful and gorgeous film. In short, young and old, should make time for Young Victoria. It is a most worthy film among 2009 cinematic offerings.

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  • Beautiful, memorable but most of all, human.

    Otoboke2009-07-12

    The 63 year reign of Queen Victoria is perhaps one of the most documented and popularly known historical reigns in British history. On the one hand, her story lacks the theatrics of earlier royals thanks to a change in social climate and attitudes, and on the other her story is one that perpetuates because it is notably human. Taking on the earlier years of her life where the budding romance between herself and the German Prince Albert was taking forefront, director Jean-Marc Vallée who has only until recently remained in the unbeknownst shadows of the industry here takes Victoria's story and captures that human element so vital to her legacy. It's a story that feels extremely humble considering its exuberant background, and yet that's partly what gives it a distinct edge here that separates it from the usual fare. Taking a very direct and focused approach that centres in on a brief five or so year period between her ascension and marriage to Albert, The Young Victoria does what so little period pieces of this nature offer. Instead of attempting a sprawling encapsulation of such a figure's entire life, Vallée instead opts to show one of the lesser known intricacies of Victoria's early years which are easily overlooked in favour of the more publicly known accolades. The result is a feature that may disgruntle historians thanks to its relatively flippant regards to facts and the like, yet never to let document get in the way of extracting a compelling story, writer Julian Fellowes sticks to his guns and delivers a slightly romanticised yet convincing portrayal. Vallée takes this and runs, making sure to fully capitalise on those elements with enough restraint to maintain integrity in regards to both the history involved and the viewer watching. A major part in the joy of watching The Young Victoria play out however simply lies in the production values granted here that bring early 1800's Regal Britain to life with a vigorous realism so rarely achieved quite so strikingly by genre films. Everything from the costume designs, sets, hair styles, lighting and photography accentuates the grandiose background inherent to Victoria's story without ever over-encumbering it. Indeed, while watching Vallée's interpretation come to life here it is very hard not to be sucked in solely through the aesthetics that permeates the visual element; and then there's the film's score also which works tremendously to further the very elegant yet personal tones that dominate Fellowes' script. Entwining the works of Schubert and Strauss into Victoria and Albert's story not only works as a point of reference for the characters to play with, but also melds to the work with an elegance and refrain that echoes composer Ilan Eshkeri's original work just as well. Yet for all the poignant compositions, lush backdrops and immaculate costumes that punctuate every scene, the single most important factor here—and indeed to most period dramas—are the performances of the cast and how they help bring the world they exist in to life. Thankfully The Young Victoria is blessed with an equally immaculate ensemble of thespians both young and old that do a fantastic job of doing just that. Between the sweet, budding romance of Victoria (Emily Blunt) and Albert (Rupert Friend) and the somewhat antagonistic struggles of her advisors and the like (spearheaded by a terrific Mark Strong and Paul Bettany), the conflicts and warmth so prevalent to Fellowe's screenplay are conveyed perfectly here by all involved which helps keep the movie from being a plastic "nice to look at but dim underneath" affair so common with these outings. In the end, it's hard to fault a work such as The Young Victoria. It's got a perfectly touching and human sense of affection within its perfectly paced romance, plus some historical significance that plays as an intriguing source of interest for those in the audience keen on such details. Of course, it may not take the cinematic world by storm and there lacks a certain significance to its overall presence that stops it from ever becoming more than just a poignantly restrained romantic period drama; yet in a sense this is what makes it enjoyable. Vallée never seems to be striving for grandeur, nor does he seem content at making a run-of-the-mill escapist piece for aficionados. Somewhere within this gray middle-ground lies The Young Victoria, sure to cater to genre fans and those a little more disillusioned by the usual productions; beautiful, memorable but most of all, human.

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  • Emily Blunt Shines as Queen Victoria

    evanston_dad2010-05-11

    Sometimes I'm glad that my grasp of English history is pathetically feeble. It makes movies like "The Young Victoria" much more suspenseful than they might otherwise be. I of course knew that Victoria reigned for a large part of the 19th century and that she died in 1901; I also knew that she was a renowned and powerful monarch. I didn't know much about her love life, and "The Young Victoria" filled that gap in my knowledge nicely. Emily Blunt plays Victoria with a distinctly modern edge of feminism which may feel a bit anachronistic to picky historian purists but which also works. After all, women like Victoria WERE the feminists of their time, forced into making their mark in what was largely a man's world by a man's terms. I'm convinced that Blunt is one of the most promising of today's young actors. She has tremendous presence on screen; while she's on it, you don't want to look anywhere else. That presence is somewhat wasted in this movie, because her biggest competition comes not from any other actors but from the period sets and costumes. But she gives this rather light and inconsequential film some substance by virtue of simply being in it. Rupert Friend plays Albert, the man Victoria eventually marries, while Paul Bettany plays her chief adviser and confidant, the man angling to get himself married to her for his own political gain. The cast of British regulars also includes Jim Broadbent, who gets crazier with every role he plays, Miranda Richardson, as Victoria's doormat of a mother, and, notable in a small role, Harriet Walter as Victoria's widowed aunt and the only person other than her eventual husband who gives her any advice that's worth a damn. Grade: B+

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