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A knight seeks to free the captive King Richard and put him back on the throne.
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Top Customer Reviews
Richard Thorpe's vivid direction and Freddie Young's gorgeous Technicolor photography ensure the film always looks a treat, while Miklos Rozsa's score is one of his very best, equally at home with both the swashbuckling spectacle and the tragic love story. Although Emlyn Williams `Squire' Wamba is a pain, most of the supporting cast - Joan Fontaine, Felix Aylmer, Finlay Currie, Robert Douglas, Guy Rolfe - acquit themselves well. Grand entertainment.
WHV's NTSC DVD transfer is for the most part excellent, though the ambush of Cedric's party seems a little faded and lacking in depth. Sadly the only film-related extra is a teaser trailer (there was a much better 4-minute trailer for the film), but at least they've made an effort to pad it out with Tom and Jerry's Oscar winning cartoon The Two Mouseleteers and trailers for Scaramouche, Knights of the Round Table and The Aviator.
Having said all that, this film is one worth watching and from time to time rewatching. It does address issues still alive in the present UK: nationality, race, culture, personal identity etc, as Sir Ivanhoe, as Saxon yet a follower of the Norman Richard the Lionheart (reigned from 1189), is in love with Saxon Rowena, but loved also by a Jewish maiden played by Elizabeth Taylor. The makers of the film also contrived to include scenes involving Robin of Loxley (Robin Hood), but the intrusion is not intrusive. The darker characters are led by a wonderfully villainous and teeth-gnashing Prince John, who has effectively usurped Richard's throne as Regent while Richard is a prisoner of the Austrian king, having been detained while on Crusade.Read more ›
For some reason I've yet to discover, there seems to be no English edition of Ivanhoe currently available. This copy is therefore a European import from the Netherlands. But, actually, if I hadn't have known that, I'd have been none the wiser - it played straightaway on my region 2 player, with its correct English voices and no over-dubbed sounds or added on-screen captions anywhere in sight. So, quite what was meant to be different is a bit beyond me. The only thing I can think is that I do know MGM had permanently lost a lot of their masters in a warehouse fire or some such event, so perhaps this was one where they weren't sufficiently happy with the digital transfer; but, like I say, it seemed okay to me.
So, to the story... Ivanhoe's been away fighting the crusades, comes back home; Prince John is abusing his brother's throne; Ivanhoe wants to raise the ransom to get King Richard back from his Austrian prison. The storyline has of course been part of many different versions of the popular Robin Hood legend, and is especially close to the recent big-budget version starring Russell Crowe and Cate Blanchett. Robert Taylor is the lead actor in the role of Ivanhoe, with Joan Fontaine playing his young sweetheart the lady Rowena (that's a kind of Maid Marion role, but without her going outdoors too much).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Another early arrival, well done all concerned. Although back cover details r in spanish u only need a modicum of holiday spanish to navigate thru the menu eg. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Lovely movie this . Robert Taylor in his fight scene with George Sanders makes for excitement even all these years later. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Amazon Customer
One of the excellent series of Hollywood interpretations of classic novels, a good mixture of drama and action, in glorious colour and spectacular battle stunts. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Kindle Customer