Nicholas and Alexandra

Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs.

With:
Michael Jayston Janet Suzman Harry Andrews Irene Worth Jack Hawkins Laurence Olivier

Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs.

The tone is set from the opening sequences depicting the birth of the Russian Emperor and Empress’ first boy and heir to the Romanov throne, followed closely by the tragic discovery that the child is haemophilic. Slowly, intrusively, the viewers get to know more about the dominant Alexandra and the frequently vacillating Nicholas, whom she influences in misguided political decisions.

Complicating factors, of course, are the growing unrest of the Russian people culminating in its confused revolution, the constant, distracting worry about the ‘bleeding’ Czarevitch and, most of all, the dominant influence on the Empress of Rasputin, without whose occult, hypnotic presence she feels the heir will die.

Scripter James Goldman (with an assist from Edward Bond) has provided literate, sparse dialog in fashioning a crystal-clear picture of a confused and confusing period. Certainly, as in the Robert K. Massie book, there’s a feel here for tragically opposed worlds both heading blindly on a collision course towards the inevitable bloody clash.

Michael Jayston makes a most believable Nicholas, while Janet Suzman is also just right in the perhaps more difficult role of the Empress.

1971: Best Art Direction, Costume Design.

Nominations: Best Picture, Actress (Janet Suzman), Cinematography, Orignal Music Score

Nicholas and Alexandra

UK

Production: Columbia. Director Franklin J. Schaffner; Producer Sam Spiegel; Screenplay James Goldman, Edward Bond; Camera Freddie Young; Editor Ernest Walter; Music Richard Rodney Bennett; Art Director John Box

Crew: (Color) Widescreen. Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1971. Running time: 185 MIN.

With: Michael Jayston Janet Suzman Harry Andrews Irene Worth Jack Hawkins Laurence Olivier

More Film

  • 'Calibre' Review: A Terrific, Intensely Terrifying

    Edinburgh Film Review: 'Calibre'

    Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs. The tone is set from the opening sequences depicting the birth of the Russian Emperor and Empress’ first boy and heir to the Romanov throne, followed closely by the tragic discovery that the child […]

  • CHRIS PRATT stars as Owen in

    Box Office: 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' Gnaws on $144 Million Debut Weekend

    Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs. The tone is set from the opening sequences depicting the birth of the Russian Emperor and Empress’ first boy and heir to the Romanov throne, followed closely by the tragic discovery that the child […]

  • Leung Chiu-wai

    Tony Leung Breaks With Wong Kar-wai’s Jettone (Reports)

    Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs. The tone is set from the opening sequences depicting the birth of the Russian Emperor and Empress’ first boy and heir to the Romanov throne, followed closely by the tragic discovery that the child […]

  • No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No

    ‘Jurassic World’ Holds off ‘Incredibles 2’ in China

    Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs. The tone is set from the opening sequences depicting the birth of the Russian Emperor and Empress’ first boy and heir to the Romanov throne, followed closely by the tragic discovery that the child […]

  • shanghai skyline China Placeholder

    Regulators Keep Chinese Film Industry in Suspense

    Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs. The tone is set from the opening sequences depicting the birth of the Russian Emperor and Empress’ first boy and heir to the Romanov throne, followed closely by the tragic discovery that the child […]

  • Matt Damon Boston Marathon documentary

    Matt Damon-Christian Bale's Ford vs. Ferrari Movie Set for Summer 2019

    Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs. The tone is set from the opening sequences depicting the birth of the Russian Emperor and Empress’ first boy and heir to the Romanov throne, followed closely by the tragic discovery that the child […]

  • Shia LaBeouf Toronto Film Festival

    Film News Roundup: Shia LaBeouf to Star in David Ayer's Thriller 'Tax Collector'

    Sam Spiegel comes up with a rarity: the intimate epic, in telling the fascinating story of the downfall of the Romanovs. The tone is set from the opening sequences depicting the birth of the Russian Emperor and Empress’ first boy and heir to the Romanov throne, followed closely by the tragic discovery that the child […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content