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Archive film is good. Detail is missing
on 13 October 2013
DVD containing archive film footage. Some rare film of his travels abroad in the 1920s. Also footage of the Western Front battles. Good section on his life prior to abdication crisis.
What let's this DVD down is the neglect on precise detail on the 'Edward and Mrs Simpson' matter. No mention of significant "others" in both their lives - no mention of the likes of Freda Dudley Ward, Thelma Furness, et al. No mention of Ernest Simpson, the divorce and aftermath. Not even a mention of that fateful day when Edward and Mrs Simpson first met (which was Saturday 10 January 1931 at Burroughs Court, Melton Mowbray).
There are some inaccuracies in the "exile" section as well. A little more research could have yielded a much more reliable documentary. The story races to a close - Edward and Mrs Simpson returned to England in 1967 for the unveiling of a memorial stone to Queen Mary. The contention is by the narrator that the Queen Mother ignored them both - not so as the full film (not shown on the DVD) proves.
There was and remains a wealth of detail including correspondence, memoirs and biographies - Philip Ziegler's study and Anna Sebba's study are excellent. Frances Donaldson's early biography is equally useful. Michael Bloch's edited volume of the couple's correspondence is useful. HRH Prince Edward's film 'Whatever Happened To The Windsors' is outstanding for the exile story. So sad the DVD on the King who threw away his crown seemingly has taken no notice of the said bounty of information. Or is said and done, there is the brilliantly produced ITV series 'Edward and Mrs Simpson' from 1978.
What a shame as this documentary promised much at the beginning but got rather lost by mid-way. Worth buying for the film footage. Not worth buying for anything else.