The Celtic queen who shook the Roman Empire. Wife of a king. Mother of two daughters. Leader of her tribe in first century Briton. Boudica (Alex Kingston, Moll Flanders and ER) is one of history?s first and fiercest women... more » warriors. Sickened by ceaseless war, the king of the Iceni accepts a treaty with the Romans in exchange for his tribe?s continued independence. But oppressively high taxes impoverish the tribe and soon the Romans want something more ? slaves. Refusing to submit, the Romans, led by the greedy and psychotic Emperor Nero, move to crush the Iceni and control their lands. When the king dies mysteriously, his wife, Boudica, is left alone to face the rapacious Romans and save her people. Drawing on the strength of her warriors, mystical druidic powers, and her own pain, Boudica unites the historically fractious tribes of Briton to unleash a stunning onslaught on the Roman colonial camps. The ferocity of Boudica?s attacks will shake the foundations of the Roman empire and make her a legend. Taken from the pages of Roman history books, the spine-tingling tale of the fearsome Queen Boudica, who dared to take on the most powerful army on earth, bursts into life as a story of love, treachery, and unquenchable thirst for revenge. Special DVD features include: selected cast filmographies; selected cast list; biography of host Russell Baker; a link to the Masterpiece Theatre Web site; closed captions; and described video for the visually impaired. On one DVD5 disc. Region coding: All regions. Audio: Dolby stereo. Screen format: Letterboxed.« less
"While this film fails miserably as a documentary, it does succeed as an entertaining action / adventure movie. I enjoyed it immensely. However, I must also admit that I'm a big Xena fan and since the historical Boudica served as the model and prototype for the fictional Xena character my opinion is probably somewhat subjective in nature. Nevertheless I'll give it anyway.
First and foremost remember, this is a made-for-television movie. Any attempts to compare this production with the likes of such theatrical blockbusters as 'Braveheart,' or 'King Arthur' would be not only unfair but ridiculous. Scaled as it was for the small screen, I found the production values to be quite high. I also disagree with some reviewers who thought the acting was substandard. Alex Kingston was wonderful in the role of Boudica, perfectly capturing the fierce warrior spirit of the Celtic queen and her love for the land and her people. I also enjoyed the performance of the lovely Emily Blunt playing the part of her oldest daughter Isolda.
Enjoy this movie for what it is, not what it could have been. And, if you're a Xena fan as I am (owning all 6 seasons on DVD), this is an ABSOLUTE MUST! To my knowledge this is the only film dealing with the life of Boudica. Flawed as it is, it does provide insight into this historical heroines' passion for life and courage in the face of impossible odds. Good reference material for the serious Xenaphile. It deserves a spot in your DVD collection."
SereneNight | California, USA | 02/11/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I am a big fan of Celtic History, so when a sibling recommended this movie, I looked forward to watching it. Well, I had to admit I was rather disappointed. This film was little better than "Viking Queen" (cheesy 1967 film loosely based on the life of Boudicca), and in part I thought it was worse, because it was produced by PBS, and purported to be `historically accurate'.History: Its difficult to discuss the historical accuracy of Warrior Queen, without giving away major plot points. Let me just say, that a little research will prove that there were great liberties taken in the screenplay and the ending.... Distressingly inaccurate and silly.Plot: the story was one sided. Celts = Good. Romans = Bad. While the depredations and depravity of the Romans were well covered in this film, Boudicca and the other Celtic tribes were equally brutal to Roman settlers and their families, often committing atrocities worse than those of the Romans. This was, of course omitted to make the Celts appear to be `pure' and the Romans `villainous and unscrupulous.' (However one may feel about Roman expansionism, they weren't all evil and corrupt).The Setting: I thought this was the most accurate. The Roman camps, and the Celtic roundhouses were well done.The Costuming: contrary to what was portrayed in the film, the Celts, especially the Celtic elite (of which Boudicca and her daughters were a part), understood proper hygiene, combed their hair, and did not run about the country side covered with dirt. Boudicca would need to inspire her troops with her wealth and power, not frighten them with her knotted dread-locked hair and Conan-garb.Customs: The Celts may not have a traditional written language, but they are strong orators. The skill of their bards, druids and poets were well known. Druids were educated for years in specialized schools. However, when faced with events where oration is required Boudicca and her drippy husband say nothing. The druid says nothing. They appear ignorant and savage rather than strong, boastful and hospitality conscious. Finally: Celtic Combat. The Celts did not have such a highly developed cavalry. They relied on foot soldiers and charioteers to deliver devastation upon their enemies. I know of no incidents where Children were used to `burrow' underneath roman forts to create spider-holes and can't imagine a Roman legion falling for such a blatant ploy. Silly.I could go on and on, but I won't. Warrior Queen was an ok piece of entertainment...But as a docu-drama it didn't work for me."
This movie gets an Irish blessing
Rose Allen | Seattle, Wa USA | 08/20/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Admittedly I know very little ancient Irish history but all the same found the movie The Warrior Queen to be an inspiration to look further and deeper into the subject. Many of the other reviewers listed here seem to have exceptionally high standards for their televised historical docu-dramas. In my own case, I hadn't planned on watching the movie at all and found it one night when channel surfing with my husband. It took us a minute or two to get a sense of what was going on, but then we got completely swept up in this epic. It is a romp of a movie that has it all: several different varieties of love, compelling political intrigue, attempts to represent possible war technologies from the past, and even mysteries in the form of Celtic magic. I didn't feel the Romans were presented as "all bad," nor the Celts as "noble savages". The day after watching this movie, I went on-line and read all I could find on Boudicca -what a fascinating figure she is! And I didn't think less of the movie for any inaccuracies since it sounds as if many aspects of this woman's life remain open questions. So, this movie gets an Irish blessing from me, as follows: If you're not a PhD in Boudiccology, and you're curious about an anti-Roman revolt lead by a woman -which was very nearly successful, than may this movie be your spring board into an intensely interesting moment in Irish history! Sit back, watch, be amazed and enjoy."
Wretched beyond belief
R.L. Holly | Austin, TX USA | 02/09/2004
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Let me quickly state that I am not reviewing this DVD release per se; I am basing my critique on viewing the TV broadcast last year. My memory has thankfully gone dim on many details, but I came away from the tube thinking, "Whoa -- that may have been the worst historical epic I've ever seen." How did the producers manage to take a very straightforward event, easily translated onto the screen, and mangle it so thoroughly? Beats me. Boudicca's tale should make a fine motion picture -- think "Braveheart" with gender-reversal -- but this ain't even close. Everything about it struck me at the time as sloppy, dopey, inaccurate, unengaging, and flat out awful. History is blatantly rewritten whenever convenient, fantasy substitutes for reality (literally -- the Celts use actual working MAGIC against Rome, how unfair of them, even though it doesn't turn the tide) , and production values are fifth rate at best. Nothing works -- not the ridiculous script, not the hamasaurus acting, not the woeful direction or leaden pacing, not the terrible costume design (the ancient Britons look like cavemen, the Roman army seems to be wearing tin foil and plastic), nothing. What a senseless waste of someone's money. Shame on them all. The real Boudicca would burn this lot to the ground faster than she did Londinium. Consider yourself warned."
James M. Mace | Meridian, Idaho United States | 09/07/2007
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Okay, there's bad, and then there's utterly dreadful. This falls into the later category. The producers don't even try to conceal the fact that this is totally biased. To add insult to injury, the costumes and overall production are absolutely terrible. The Celts look like something out of the movie "Caveman" while the Romans look straight out of a low-budget movie from the 1960's.
I was able to forgive the cheesy sequences depicting magic, however the fact that every attrocity committed by Boudicca is conveniently overlooked is unforgivable. It is only mentioned in passing that they had sacked Londinium (London). No mention of the fact that every citizen unable to leave was murderously butchered. Most historians agree that approximately 80,000 were killed in Boudicca's rampage, most of them fellow Brittons.
The Roman tactics were the most abominable I have ever seen. Children burrowing under a camp and hamstringing the legionaries?? Say what?? If the Romans were so easily beaten by children and teenage girls (yeah, I loved how Boudicca's daughters are able to cut down numerous Roman soldiers before falling in the final battle), then it is doubtful they would have ever conquered the known world in the first place. Their armor looked straight out of a third-grade Halloween party as well.
It is painfully obvious that no effort was made whatsoever with historical integrity. What you have is a piece of poorly made Celtic propoganda that even the most die-hard "woad" could not find inspiring.
If you want to learn about Boudicca's rebellion, read "Imperial Governor" by George Shipway. It is the book that the movie SHOULD have been based on. Don't waste your time watching this; I honestly felt like my IQ had dropped a few points after suffering through it!"