Monday, February 16, 2009
The Tudors - the good, the bad, and the beautiful
Posted by JaneGS
I watched the first three episodes of The Tudors and enjoyed it immensely. Like so many others, I love reading about and watching movies about the soap opera that was the Tudor dynasty, and this rendition doesn't disappoint. HVIII is rightfully played by Jonathan Rhys Meyers as a sexy, energetic monarch, and Jeremy Northam and Sam Neill, two of my all-time favorite actors, shine as Sir Thomas More and Cardinal Wolsey, respectively. I think the tennis matches that HVIII engages in is right in line with Mr. Darcy fencing in the BBC/A&E P&P--I remember reading in Emma Thompson's notes on making Sense and Sensibility, how it was necessary to show Elinor and Marianne doing everyday activities (like cutting rushes) and not just sitting around and talking. The best costume dramas fill in the gaps and show us what the leading players did besides rant, rave, intrigue, and seduce.
I can't decide whether I like Maria Doyle Kennedy as Katherine of Aragon or not. While Kennedy's acting is great, she seems to be stereotypically cast. I've always rather liked the portrait of Katherine shown above, which defies the Carmen look she is often given in movies, etc.
I haven't yet seen The Other Boleyn Girl, though I did read it (of course!) so I am liking this version's Anne Boleyn, who thus far is a coquette but not a monster. What's clear is the degree to which Anne's father and uncle wrote the script for her relationship with the king.