Starring: Emily Blunt, Rupert Friend, Paul Bettany, Miranda Richardson, Jim Broadbent, Mark Strong
A dramatization of the turbulent first years of Queen Victoria’s rule, and her enduring romance with Prince Albert.
Hooray for the costume drama. I know they’re not to everyone’s tastes, but give me well done intrigue and fancy dresses, and I’m in heaven. I was afraid that The Young Victoria would be a bit dry and less interesting than, say, Elizabeth or The Queen, but I was actually incredibly impressed with the whole film.
I was prepared to discover that the details of Victoria’s early reign were greatly altered for dramatic effect, but apparently the movie is quite historically accurate. At least, as historically accurate as a film of this nature can be while remaining entertaining. The pace is steady, and while the drama is mostly low key, it is nonetheless incredibly engaging from start to finish. I have to hand it to Jean-Marc Vallée, because it so many depictions of monarchy are either tedious and stuffy or wildly over the top and scandalous, and this is neither. It tells the story lovingly and faithfully, but with an eye for dramatic aesthetics. The cinematography was subtle but very well done, the costuming phenomenal and the acting superb. Emily Blunt and Rupert Friend have the most lovely, effortless chemistry; it seems like they’re selling this grand, real life romance without hardly trying.
I didn’t go into this review intending to gush, but it really is a very well-crafted film, and if you enjoy the genre, you’ll absolutely love it, I guarantee.