I was truly prepared to not like this movie but was pleasantly surprised. Warts and all, the story is well told and the actresses were a joy to watch. Saoirse Ronan played Mary with just the right touch of toughness and vulnerability. John Guy (who wrote the book the movie is based on) has done a great disservice to the reputation of Queen Elizabeth I. It’s beyond me why he doesn’t like her. She is characterized as a dithering, crazed nutcase. But that’s okay. We know what she was really like. Margot Robbie’s makeup and prosthetic nose give a realistic profile that matches the portraits of Elizabeth.
The rest of the supporting cast are great. Guy Pearce is a very suitable William Cecil. My favorite part of the movie is the scene of Rizzio’s murder. IMHO, this is one of the most dramatic moments in history and the abominable act is represented perfectly. I believe Mary’s finest moment followed this act. She rose to the occasion and acted as a strong queen if only for a short time. The movie is not perfect but don’t let that stop you from seeing it. I’m going to go all out and just say, I loved this movie.
John Guy, who wrote the book the movie was based on talks about his view of the film
The Freelance History Writer is pleased to announce we have a new affiliation with The Tudor Society. This is a membership based website that is chock full of information for serious lovers of Tudor history.
The Tudor Society offers a forum, chatroom, articles on Tudor history, and a monthly online magazine. The Society has videos and expert talks and a suggested reading list along with access to many primary sources. Any Tudor history lover will love this site. And The Freelance History Writer will be contributing to the Society’s magazine “Tudor Life”. Click on the image below for more information and to join.
Peter Konieczny has taken over duties as editor of Medieval Warfare Magazine which is printed by Karwansaray Publishers based in the Netherlands. Peter is one of the founders of the Medievalists.net website. I had a chance to take a look at the first two issues of the magazine since Peter took over.
Volume VI, Issue 5 came out in November/December of 2016 and is dedicated to the Kings Templar. Articles in this include “Who were the Templars?”, “Bernard of Clairvaux and the Templars: The new knighthood” which spells out Bernard’s views on the Templars, “Military Secrets of the Knights Templar: The Rule”, “The Battle of La Forbie: Crusader Catastrophe”, and “Ten Facts Concerning the Templars”. The issue includes other stories related to military history. I know very little about the Templars so this was a good introduction into their inner workings.
Volume VI, Issue 6 came out in January/February 2017 and is dedicated to the German Peasants Revolt in the early sixteenth century. Some of the articles in this issue are titled “The Siege of Salzburg”, “The Knight With the Iron Hand” and “16th Century Anti-War Art”. Other articles address the fact that the weapon called the flail did not actually exist and how timber was vital to warfare and what happened to the forests because of it. Again, I knew little of the German Peasants Revolt so this was very interesting.
Each issue of the magazine has opening and ending notes by the editor, many varied and colorful illustrations and photographs, book reviews and a section on medieval history and warfare in film. Each article is well written and informative and there is a list of further reading if your interest is piqued to go further. This magazine would satisfy anyone interested in medieval warfare and medieval history in general. Digital and printed subscriptions are available.
Italian Women, 1380 AD
The Freelance History Writer has started a new subreddit on the reddit website. It’s called Women in European History. Reddit is a great place to post articles about the subject and discuss them. Click on the link, check it out and subscribe if you’re interested.
Women in European History on reddit
Best Wishes and Happy Holidays to all my loyal followers and readers at The Freelance History Writer. Wishing you all the best now and in the new year.