Ivanhoe is a great romantic adventure, mounted extravagantly, crammed with action, and emerges as a spectacular feast.
Both the romance and the action are concentrated around Robert Taylor who, as Ivanhoe, is the courageous Saxon leader fighting for the liberation of King Richard from an Austrian prison and his restoration to the throne. Two women play an important part in his life. There is Rowena (Joan Fontaine), his father’s ward, with whom he is in love; and Rebecca (Elizabeth Taylor), daughter of the Jew who raises the ransom money. She is in love with him.
Taylor sets the pace with a virile contribution which is matched by George Sanders as his principal adversary. Fontaine contributes to all the requisite charm and understanding as Rowena.
1952: Nominations: Best Picture, Color Cinematography, Scoring of a Dramatic Picture