I am married to a British man that by far knows more about the Queen of England than I do but this DVD has taught me a lot about this amazing woman.

In 1952 at the age of 25, Elizabeth Windsor took the reigns as the Queen of England after her father died. She has remained at the throne ever since then. This DVD, The Queen, is a British series that mixes documentary footage, current interviews with historians and friends and observers of the royal family. Fictionalized scenes “based on research” were an attempt to paint a fuller portrait of the ubiquitous but enigmatic monarch.

The DVD would be educational and entertaining for anyone interested in the history of England or Europe and especially for the fans of royalty. It takes us back to the childhood days of both Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret who was apparently naughty and out for a good time even when she was a child. In fact it was Princess Margaret’s bad-girl ways that caused Queen Elizabeth the first crisis once she took the throne.

This DVD set covers 5 episodes. There are 5 different actresses portraying the queen at some pivotal moments in her reign as queen from 1955 to 2005, which are Emily Fox, Samantha Bond, Susan Jameson, Barbara Flynn and Diana Quick.

  • Episode 1 – Sisters – Once King George VI dies Elizabeth is crowned Queen of England. Shortly afterward Margaret realizes that there is a huge difference between herself and her sister now, so things start to change. Elizabeth finds herself embarrassed of her sister’s actions over a relationship with a married but then divorced man who is an employee at the palace. The Queen would like nothing more than to see her sister happy but she knows she has to remember her duty as Queen.
  • Episode 2 – Us And Them – In 1969 popularity dropped to a new low level, the royal money was tight, and government leaders began questioning the monarchy. When the Queen receives a 100% raise the miners go on strike, the IRA makes threats and Princess Ann is almost kidnapped.
  • Episode 3 – The Rivals – In 1986 the Commonwealth gets its first female Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher. Immediately there is a conflict between Thatcher and The Queen. When Thatcher opposes The Queen on almost everything, especially sanctions against apartheid in South Africa, the queen is apparently not so amused.
  • Episode 4 – The Enemy Within -After 40 years over the throne Queen Elizabeth’s children start becoming a problem for her. Andrew and Fergie, the Duke and Duchess of York are suddenly in the news over their divorce and Charles and Diana make the news over a woman called Camilla. There is a castle fire and it is badly damaged.
  • Episode 5 – How Do You Save A Problem Like Camilla? -Princess Margaret died weeks before Queen Elizabeth’s mother died but The Queen isn’t exactly happy about Camilla Parker Bowles attending the funeral of her lover’s grandmother. Prince Charles thinks there is nothing wrong with being with the woman he really loves and says his relationship with Camilla is nonnegotiable. The Queen sees no other choice but to accept the marriage.

It is interesting to see what goes on behind closed doors of the royal family. We don’t always get to see this side of things. From the public eye, they seem to be the ideal family until it comes out that like every day people they have personal problems as well.

This DVD set, The Queen is a two disc set. The approximate run time is 238 minutes. It goes on sale on October 5th. 2010 so if you would like to pre-order your copy just click on the Amazon link above. I think you will find it very interesting.

Jan Barrett

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