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Queen Christina (1933) (SiRiUs sHaRe) torrent


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Torrent Description
Queen Christina (1933)

Young Christina ascends to the Swedish throne at age 5. While she is queen, Sweden becomes a dominant European power at the end of the Thirty Years War. Like England's Elizabeth I, Christina (Greta Garbo) is pressured into a politically correct marriage (her cousin) but she falls in love with an emissary from Spain (John Gilbert). As with her English counterpart, religion becomes a focal point with Protestant Sweden aghast that their queen could marry a Catholic.

Greta Garbo ... Queen Christina
John Gilbert ... Antonio
Ian Keith ... Magnus
Lewis Stone ... Oxenstierna
Elizabeth Young ... Countess Ebba Sparre
C. Aubrey Smith ... Aage
Reginald Owen ... Charles
Georges Renavent ... Chanut
David Torrence ... Archbishop
Gustav von Seyffertitz ... General
Ferdinand Munier ... Innkeeper

Director: Rouben Mamoulian

Runtime: 97 mins

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0024481/

Codecs:

Video : 645 MB, 909 Kbps, 23.976 fps, 480*352 (4:3), XVID = XVID Mpeg-4,
Audio : 51 MB, 72 Kbps, 48000 Hz, 1 channels, 0x55 = MPEG Layer-3, CBR,

"I,m tired of being a symbol, Chancellor, I long to be a human being! This longing I cannot suppress!" (Greta Garbo as queen Christina)

On December, the 26th, 1933 Rouben Mamoulian's great production about the Swedish queen was released. Greta Garbo (1905-1990), a Swedish actress already famous for her roles in silent movies and some sound films, like Anna Christie (1930), was cast to play the main role by Rouben Mamoulian for the first time in her new contract. Perhaps, the producers with the director expected some success, but certainly nobody could think of the movie being watched and admired in the 21st century...

The story of Christina is changed; however, it does not make a serious distortion. The movie shows a lot of true facts from her life (her coronation in 1632 and her desire for peace) as well as some additional events (she did not abdicate for love). But, like with most other films, history had to be interpreted to the need of the audience of the 1930s.

The movie is mostly famous for dealing with Christina's desire for personal happiness and love affair between Christina and the Spanish ambassador Don Antonio De Pimentel (John Gilbert). The most memorable scene, for me personally, is their first meeting in an inn. The way Mr Mamoulian showed it is really extraordinary: nothing vulgar or open without taboo. Grapes which are a reference either to Ancient Greece and god Bachus or to Spain, Antonio's homeland. Christina is showed walking through the room and touching all objects in order to memorize them. Greta Garbo gives one of her finest performances in this memorable scene. REALLY SENSIBLE SCENE THAT VERY FEW PEOPLE WOULD BE ABLE TO SHOOT NOWADAYS! What is more, her lesbianism is hidden. There is only one moment when Christina kisses one of her servant girls in the mouth.

Another significant aspect of the movie is Christina's long for being a human, not a symbol. Her famous words that I contained at the beginning of my review reflect her personality. Everything she does is for happiness. She falls in love with Antonio and plans a happy life with him. However, Antonio dies in her arms and their love cannot be fulfilled. The final shot of Christina standing at the bow of the ship as it sets sail is another impressive, magnificent moment. Before shooting this scene, Mr Mamoulian said to Greta: "I want your face to be a blank sheet of paper. I want the writing to be done by every member of the audience..."

The cast are excellent. Greta Garbo performed in many movies, including ANNA KARENINA (1935), LOVE (1927), MATA HARI (1931), CAMILLE (1936), and in all of them, she was perfect; but this role is her ultimate masterpiece. Undoubtedly incredible! Even if you don't like anything about this movie, Greta's performance is something you will never forget. Consider how she played a man while meeting Antonio in an inn; or her speech where she calls for the end of Thirty Years War: "Spoils, glory, flags, and trumpets! What is behind these high sounding words? Death and destruction!"

John Gilbert also does a good job as Antonio but he, like everyone else, is in the shadow of Greta. I do not know if there were other such good actors or actresses in cinema's history. Perhaps, Romy Schneider... but, indeed, very few people could leave such an unfading trace in cinema.

Queen Christina is my beloved, favorite movie, a piece of high art at multiple levels. More than 70 years have passed since it was released and the movie is still a pleasure to see. It has been a must-have in my family from the time my Grandma was young in the 1930s. The movie really deserves to be released on DVD.

There are movies that you watch and quickly forget.

There are movies that you may like and see them more than once to remember for longer.

Queen Christina is a movie that, having seen once, you will never forget.

With no hesitation 10/10

.............................................................................................................................

I recently purchased the Greta Garbo DVD collection and the first film I watched was "Queen Christina". It's the first time I've seen it from beginning to end and it's a beautiful and haunting film. I'm surprised by how old it is. It was made in 1933! And yet the film, aside from the usual dated aspects seen in every movie made then, is remarkably ahead of its time, certainly in the way it views of a female nobility, androgyny and homosexuality. It surprising this movie was made, in the light of the nefarious Hays Code which came into existence just a couple of years before this film was made.

The cinematography is beautiful. The script, though simplistic in its portrayal of Queen Christina's life (the reason I gave this film one star short of a perfect 10), is full of interesting dialogue, which is endlessly quotable. But the one thing that makes the movie so great is Greta herself. Remove Greta from the movie and not much is left. She makes the movie and what an amazing and haunting performance she gives. Some might find her way of acting a bit much but personally, I think it's something to behold. There's no other actor in the world of cinema like Greta Garbo and this film proves it in spades. Her performance is pitch perfect: she's towering, impossibly beautiful and yet vulnerable and warm as well, which is amazing feat. There are several unforgettable and iconic scenes in "Queen Christina" but the biggest icon is Greta herself. Her overwhelming presence in the movie makes it a thoroughly haunting experience. It's amazing that the folks behind the camera knew what amazing person they were working with and "Queen Christina" is the perfect showcase for this legendary star.

As for the quality of the DVD transfer, it's a shame there isn't a better looking version than this one. The film was filled with scratches and sound problems. Like Lawrence of Arabia or Vertigo, "Queen Christina" needs to be restored to its former glory and re-released on the big screen, so a new generation can discover and appreciate this underrated movie.

.............................................................................................................................

"Queen Christina" is merely one of Garbo's greatest performances, but it's second to none. She imbues the role of the conflicted Swedish monarch with majesty and vulnerability, and also embodies the clarity, determination, assurance, and style of a great ruler. This Christina is no silly Mary Queen of Scots, thoughtlessly throwing everything away for love, and sowing the seeds of her own destruction. Garbo's queen sacrifices power for a man, true, but only because she understands that she can't have both and must have love, that Sweden will still flourish without her, and that to fulfill her deepest needs as a human being she must accept the inevitable cost. She is a lover of the arts, a reader of great books, curious about the entire world and thirsty to drink at the well of experience. She is a bohemian, and there's little satisfaction for her in wielding great power while being denied the opportunity to live fully.

Whether this is an accurate portayal of the historical person is really beside the point. "Queen Christina" is an MGM costume spectacular with MGM's biggest star. And Lord, is she gorgeous!

Watching John Gilbert as Antonio makes me wonder why he didn't last for long in talking pictures. His hairstyle here makes him look a bit goofy, but he's a handsome guy and his speaking voice is perfectly adequate. He doesn't come close to Garbo in charisma -- who does? He handles the role quite well, and the mutual affection of the pair is palpable.

At least one poster has questioned whether the implied homoeroticism of several scenes in this film really exists -- the kiss between the queen and her lady-in-waiting, the "No Chancellor...I shall die a bachelor" line, the reaction of Antonio's servant about him staying in bed all day with "the other gentleman." S/he is wrong -- it's definitely there. But I think Ruben Mamoulian was just having a little fun with Christina's "masculine" eccentricity to add some spice to the story. She was hailed as a "king" at her coronation, and a king she endeavored to be.

Some viewers might find "Queen Christina" dated. It's terribly romantic in the style of the 1930s, and if you can't buy into that you might have problems. Also, there's the characteristic cliche of all the old MGM period films dealing with royalty -- the ceremonial entrance of nobles into the court, accompanied by fanfares and stately music. I counted four of those in this movie -- oh, well, it goes with the genre.

And that final scene? It really is unforgettable!

.............................................................................................................................

* Greta Garbo initially requested that Laurence Olivier play the lead, Don Antonio, since she was impressed by his performance in Westward Passage (1932). In July 1933, the press announced that Olivier would take the part. However, when they did the rehearsals in August, Garbo and Olivier had no chemistry, and he was released, although MGM Studios honored his negotiated salary of $1,500 a week for four weeks minimum. Garbo requested that John Gilbert be cast in the role instead.

* For the famous closing shot of Greta Garbo at the prow of the ship, director Rouben Mamoulian had wanted the camera to begin with a long shot, and then, in one unbroken take, gradually dolly in on a two-thirds close-up of Garbo's face, holding on her at the end of the shot. Unfortunately, with the camera's 48mm lens that close to the human face, pores tend to resemble craters on the surface of the moon. Borrowing on aspects of the magic lantern, Mamoulian devised a large, ruler-shaped, glass filter strip that was clear at one end, becoming increasingly more diffused along its length. With this glass filter mounted in front of the lens, as the camera moved in on Garbo, the glass strip was gradually drawn through the filter holder, beginning with the clear end, and ending with the diffused end (close-up), softening Garbo's facial features with more flattering results

* The scene where Christina goes around the room at the inn, remember the night she spent with her lover, was choreographed so meticulously that Greta Garbo performed the scene to a metronome.

* Since John Gilbert was falling out of favor with the majors as a leading man, Greta Garbo was doing him a big favor by requesting him as the male lead. Unfortunately, the film did not help to re-establish Gilbert, and soon after he dropped out of pictures altogether.

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