Here’s an interesting list of the “best historical royalty” films. Interesting….and peculiar. As well as some excellent period-based movies we have the likes of The King and I, the animated Anastasia musical and the Taylor-Burton Cleopatra. Maybe the latter will be acceptable to many, but to me it was a circus because of what went on behind the scenes. Not the film’s fault, I suppose. And a friend has pointed out that some of the sets were used in Carry on Cleo, which seems rather appropriate. “Hail, Caesar, dost thou like what thou seest?” (Or words to that effect.) Well Taylor’s Cleopatra certainly got the answer she was seeking!
In the list of film versions of the Bard’s Richard III, Ian McKellen’s gets the accolade. Not from me. If the list concerns historical royalty, then it should look the part. This one certainly doesn’t, being transferred to some imaginary 20th-century European setting. Yes, yes, one of my hobby-horses.
I’m afraid I can’t take musicals as counting among the “best historical royalty”films. They may contain a soupçon of fact, but not enough to be taken seriously.
As to the rest of the list, you’ll have to read the article to find out which they are. But they’re definitely acceptable to me. I loved them all, especially the one in the above illustration.