What’s new in cinema – “Elizabeth”: time travel with a timeless culture


Just in time to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the accession to the throne: a new documentary featuring the life of the Queen – exclusively with archival material.

“are you ready?” – “Yes, madam,” an official from Queen Elizabeth II replies, and the documentary begins preparing for an event at Buckingham Palace.

Perfection is the arrangement of the day for the occasion of the Queen. Personnel use a ruler to check the distance between the seat and the board. A reflective gilded door opens and the British monarch enters the room.

The film then moves to a spectacular stage show by Robbie Williams. “Let me entertain you,” the pop singer yelled into the microphone. The film’s message is clear from the start: The Queen is an artist.

“Heavy rests on the head, wears a crown”

Just in time to celebrate the 70th anniversary of his accession to the throne, the latest film from late director Roger Michel, best known for the comedy “Notting Hill”, will be released.

The Brit only used archival footage of “Elizabeth”, from the Queen as a child until today. What distinguishes the film is not only that it dispensed with commentary, but also an unconventional montage.


The Queen before thirty: Elizabeth with her husband, Prince Philip.

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Roger Michel skillfully blends footage from the Royal Archives with images from show business and emphasizes them with songs whose lyrics complement the pictures.

In one chapter, for example, Elizabeth II sees mourning for her father’s death and then is crowned at just 27 years old. The scene acquires emotional significance as it is accompanied by the phrase “Heavy is the head that wears the crown” from the rap song “Crown” (Stormzy).

The queen as a pop icon

Elizabeth II has been portrayed by many famous artists: from screenplay editions of Andy Warhol to Paul McCartney’s popular song “Your Majesty”. The film captures an interview with the Beatles singer in which he says that the young queen was a “glamorous” to him when he was a teenager.

A man adjusts the photo with the queen.  On the right and left is a white and red image of a can.


The Queen Among Soup Cans: Andy Warhol portrayed Elizabeth in his “Reigning Queens” screen prints.


Elizabeth shows that her unmistakable dress style also shaped the movie divas of the 1950s and ’60s with excerpts from Audrey Hepburn’s dress rehearsals as Princess in Heart and Crown.

Queen, puzzle

“She’s probably the most famous woman in the world,” says producer Kevin Lauder. Despite this, little is known about it.

As Parliamentary Queen, she takes her acting job very seriously: she does not reveal her political views, feelings or personal opinions in public.

The mystery surrounding her person also made her a famous character in countless films and series such as “The Crown” or “The Queen”, where attempts were made to unravel the identity of the people behind the symbolism.

The queen is also the head of the church

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Queen Elizabeth II inherited the title Defender of the Faith. He ascended the English throne for 400 years: in 1521, Pope Leo X awarded the title “Protector and Defender of the Christian Faith” to the English king.

Ten years later, Henry VIII separated from Rome so that he could marry more and increase his power. “Guardian of the Faith” Heinrich was expelled from Rome.

Henry VIII then made himself the secular head of the Church of England. He retained the hereditary nickname “Fidei Defensor” and so did all of his successors. It is also found on many British coins such as the abbreviation FD.

The caliphs were given the unisex nickname: “Fidei Defensatrix”. Queen Elizabeth II considers herself a queen, thank God. She was crowned by the spiritual head of her church, the Archbishop of Canterbury, who also anointed the Queen 70 years earlier.

As a defender of the faith, the Queen stands ready to stand up for Christianity and is loyal to the Church of England, the mother church of the universal Anglican Church. Even if, like the Commonwealth, it is steadily losing strength.

In fact, some Commonwealth countries have already suspended this part of the British ownership of their countries. Muslim-majority Pakistan, for example, could not identify itself with the “Christian faith”.

The heir to the throne, Prince Charles, admitted as early as 1994 that he wanted to be no more a “defender of faith” than a “apologist for faith”. Charles would like to take into account the empire’s religious pluralism and one day become the pluralistic “guardian of religions.” (Judith Wepfler)

The world is one stage

The fact that Elizabeth II spent decades perfecting her role as a symbol of British monarchy with strict discipline also inspired the director to produce his fourth documentary.

Black and white portrait of a woman with a crown, glasses and leaves in her hands.  He speaks into the microphone.


The film also shows the routine operations of the Queen – right down to the monotony.

Copyright © 2022 Ascot Elite Entertainment Group.

Interestingly enough, all three were previously about actresses and musicians, according to producer Kevin Lauder. As you can see in the movie, Roger Michel had the idea that the Queen would give some kind of performance when she’s on the big public stage.

show must go on

For many Britons, Elizabeth II is the epitome of national identity. The film also bows to the queen and memorizes critical undertones. The question of whether a traditional institution such as the monarchy is still modern in a democratic country is addressed in passing.

It was not the intent of the filmmakers to provoke political debates with the documentary. “Elizabeth” is rather an entertaining journey through the life of the world’s tallest king.

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