But For Wales?
the wizard of uz | Studio City, CA United States | 03/18/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"One of the finest films of all time, directed by Fred ( High Noon, From Here to Eternity ) Zinnemann. Among the ensemble of players are Wendy Hiller, Orson Welles, Susanna York, Robert Shaw, Leo Mc Kern and--in one of his earliest roles--a young John Hurt. Truly a cast for all seasons! It's an acting lesson, headed by the great Paul Scofield who not only captures the essence of Sir Thomas Moore, but who does so with superb economy of motion; he hardly makes a gesture thoughout the entire film--- Duse would have loved it. How does he do it? Well, as I said, it's an acting lesson. Suffice it to say he rightly deserved winning the Oscar. Robert Bolt's brilliant play is a study of contrasts with a mystery at the heart of the theme: Was Moore a Saint who is now in Heaven with The Blessed, or was he a fool who could have died in his bed at a ripe old age after a lifetime of domestic felicity and the highest honors his country could bestow upon him?If there is no God, or if you believe that the conflict between The Anglican and Catholic Churches to be of no paramount importance, is your integrity still worth losing your head on the chopping block?Hmm. . .Magnificent in every respect."
A longtime favorite
A. Delgado | 08/23/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"One of the greatest English language films ever made about one of the greatest men who ever lived. St. Thomas More was a man of extraordinary conviction and through the years has proven to be a great inspiration to me, personally. When Sir Thomas is asked to endorse Henry VIII's petition for annulment from his marriage to Catherine of Aragon, he's fully aware of the consequences of his refusal. Nevertheless, he did what he knew and felt was right and he paid the ultimate price. A true martyr in every sense of the word and a film that makes the viewer question his own value system and sense of passion and integrity. Paul Scoffield's brilliant and profound characterization of Sir Thomas is still a wonder to behold. He imbues this larger than life person with such quiet dignity and grace that it belies the reality of his existence. This is not a man worried about dying. This is a man worried about living without the courage of his convictions, knowing that he supported something he truly abhorred and knew was wrong. Robert Shaw's performance as Henry VIII is equally wonderful, as are Susannah York, Dame Wendy Hiller and Orson Wells. I never tire of watching this film or reading the play; incidentally, also one of my favorites."
"The weeping tyme is the tyme of this wretched world."
bonnieBgoode11 | 04/26/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
A superb historical drama revolving around Henry VIII and his break with the Catholic Church over a refused marriage annulment, and his establishment of the Church of England. The movie centers on the battle between Sir Thomas More (played brilliantly by Paul Scofield), Lord Chancellor to Henry, and Henry VIII himself, played by Robert Shaw. More is a quiet, steady pillar of strength as he defies Henry and his religious establishment plans. The king demands a loyalty pledge from More (More as Lord Chancellor is the second most powerful man in England), which More cannot give him without abandoning obedience to Rome and his faith. But More is a practical man, and a lawyer to boot, and defends himself in hair-splitting lawyery terms - to no avail. The back and forth exchanges between More and Henry are brilliant, however. In fact, there's a great deal of intelligence in the movie (and a great deal of wit, too), yet the intellectual mental jousting is made to blend entertainingly with the drama unfolding on the screen. The movie makes you feel smart and entertained at the same time. The movie won a wagonload of Oscars, and deservedly so. Anyone interested in learning more about More and his fight with Henry should read Peter Ackroyd's excellent biography THE LIFE OF THOMAS MORE."