The Young Victoria – 3.5/5 – Movie Reviews by Ry!

youngThe Young Victoria – 3.5/5 – Historical films; they are the kind of films that tread the waters of dramatization and real life facts.  With films like these, you always tend to get a film that is either: deep in character development or an on look into biased ideals for the sake of making a film.  Here, in ‘The Young Victoria’, you have a film that doesn’t waste preaching and just focuses on the early life or a memorable monarch.  Along with this, you have a great deal of drama and intrigue that helps envelope history, which most people outside of England or Europe may not know.  Overall, beyond some fast paced direction, The Young Victoria is a great character piece for one of the most memorable monarchs in history.

Premise: Dominated by her possessive mother and her bullying consort since childhood, Victoria (Emily Blunt) 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 (Rupert Friend) is encouraged to court her for solely political motives but, following her accession, finds he is falling in love with her.  What ensues is a ride through the ages, where political motives are family bred, and love can be more powerful than a Queens’s rule.

When it comes to the titular character of Queen Victoria, Emily Blunt shines in the role as the most powerful woman in England.  From the beginning till the end, she spring boards someone who is deeply complex.  She gives us a person who is has an affinity to do a lot for the common people, even if she lives a role of isolation as a monarch, and has other people pulling her strings for power.  Saying she brings a deeply complex person is really remarkable, because of the layers and years the movies takes place.  Before and right when she becomes queen, you watch as Blunt shows someone who is very innocence when it comes to the others in the Kings court.  She has been brought up in isolation, but her feistiness builds upon this and provides strength as it shows she is more human than her ‘family’; who is using her for political gain.  Once she becomes Queen, you watch as her character grows stronger, and you see someone, even though she is young, exudes charisma more sternly and profoundly then some of the adults who are in her court.  Using a humane touch to the character helps the audience connect to the complexion of royalty, as she provides insight into a world unknown.  Along with this mirror, she also provides a side of what a ‘young’ queen may act and be like.  Emily Blunt is remarkable, and it exudes even greater with the love Victoria has for Prince Albert, played by Rupert Friend.  Throughout the film and the history of this film, he becomes her confident, through letters and other means of communication.  Through it all, the love grows between the two, and you see it through his great acting and comparable interactions with his courtship and others he has to deal with.  When the love reaches its peak and they finally get married, you witness true chemistry between the two.  Through them, they exude the highs of lows of a real couple, including in the climax.  When it comes to the supporting cast, you get the common caricatures you find in films set during these kind of time periods.  Beyond being helpful towards the main two characters, they weren’t developed beyond that point, and are standard threads to helping the plot instead of being real characters.  This helps and hinders the complex of the story, as you are never fully engrossed in it, but are attentive for majority of the film.

When it comes to the directionstory of the film, it felt very fast pace for all that it is covering.  Being a historical piece, there is a thin line that the director can cross.  With hitting certain key points in Victoria’s early life, we get to see how the influence of politics has on the royal family.  In trying to make all this political wiring more than just an ‘informational ad’, the director has to include a bit of movie drama along with a formal script.  Thankfully, the drama isn’t mediocre and the script is decent enough to bring some attentiveness to the detail of ‘The Young Victoria’.  As mentioned above, there is a love story that yields its head along with the dramatizations.  The love story isn’t force fed, and it is brought along gradually, making it have quality and be believable.  Another thing the love story does is provide a strong point for the film.  Here, is where you find a connection with the characters, as well as a heart for the story and life for Queen Victoria.  The weakness of the film falls in the beginning and the direction being very fast paced.  Being fast pace creates a situational base of the facts surrounded by the general drama and formidable script.  What you get is scenarios of who wants what, and the circumstances and consequences of those scenarios.  There isn’t much time to think for these scenarios, so you don’t get a great feel for what is happening.  This holds the film from being developed better, and keeps the film at an average tone.

The true strength, outside of the great acting from Emily Blunt, is in the cinematography.  In the visuals you get a great look into the era of Queen Victoria.  In this look, you have many outlandish and subtle looks at architecture, environments and attire.  The great colors you see here are blended by all these three things.  It helps create a magical, but formal world.  A good thing of this is that the visuals don’t go over the top, and are subtle enough to make you feel as if you want to be among the Queens Court, or part of the political scheming.  The score is also brilliant aspect of the film.  It helps blend the feelings of an 18 century England to a modern audience.  The score blends a great mix of opera tone and symphony aurora.  This helps create strength to the tone, and provide emotions to the two main characters.

Overall, The Young Victoria is a good mixture of historical retelling inside a dramatic and politically enticed film.  Emily Blunt provides quality and depth to the title character and her male counterpart, Rupert Friend, helps add complexion as Prince Albert.  Some of the direction is fast pace, making it hard to grapple any sense of the movie.  The addition of the love story keeps the film watchable, as well as the visuals and score.  If you’re into historical dramas, this is a blu-ray to pick up, rental or buy.

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