Maria Montez was accorded top billing in this film by contractual agreement, although she is in the picture only long enough to take a bath in a tricky 17th century bathtub while sipping coffee with Charles Stuart and delivering dialogue in a barely-understandable French-accent. This is the second major film released within a short period with King Charles II as a primary character, and Charles here and Charles (George Sanders) in "Forever Amber" are two very varied approaches to the same character. This one takes place prior to the beginning of "Forever Amber" when Charles II and his followers are hiding out in Holland from Oliver Cromwell's puritan Round Heads. Being temporarily at liberty (or unemployed), Charles takes a day job at the farm/estate of Katie, and falls in love with her. Meanwhile he eludes his enemies by agility, enterprise and sword play, some of the latter performed while riding the blades of a Dutch windmill. He is summoned back to the throne and has to leave ...Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"Screen Director's Playhouse" broadcast a 30 minute radio adaptation of the movie on January 23, 1949 with Douglas Fairbanks Jr. reprising his film role. See more »
Director Max Ophuls's original ending was changed prior to the American release. In the original ending, there is an unbroken shot that starts with Nigel Bruce's character waiting outside the door and goes on to follow Douglas Fairbanks Jr. (in his regal garb) as he descends the stairs and walks out into the crowd. Katie (Rita Corday) prays and leaves her room. Two men enter the now-empty inn and discuss the placement of a commemorative plaque for the site. As they go over the wording for the plaque (about Charles II's loyal supporters, etc.), they notice Katie exiting in the background and dismiss her as unimportant. As they continue reading, the screen dissolves to a shot of the plaque (seen earlier in the film), closing in on the engraved image of Charles II's head in profile at the bottom. (In the American release ending, a quick shot of Katie leaving her room breaks up the shot of Fairbanks descending the stairs. After the king exits, the film cuts to the plaque and the engraved image.) The original ending may have been seen on international prints of the film. Turner Classic Movies has, on occasion, shown the alternate ending as a bonus after airing the American version of the film. See more »
Cavaliers v Roundheads
Maria Montez plays a French Countess in this film and headlines the show. She's barely in the film, for goodness sake! Her role could have been completely written out - it has no relevance to the story whatsoever. She must have been very important. Can someone explain?
The story is set in Holland during the exile of England's King Charles II in 1660. Douglas Fairbanks Jr. plays the king and spends the film wooing farm girl Rita Corday (Katie). He, of course, is undercover. An interesting sub-plot is introduced when Robert Coote shows up at the farm claiming to be King Charles II and demanding food and lodgings. Cue humour. Unfortunately, there is too much humour in this film - it exists in nearly every scene which is not what I was wanting. I hoped for some actual historical fact so if you expect any truth you will be disappointed. It's basically a love story with some sword fighting. It could be set anywhere. However, I am glad that the Cavaliers won. I am a Cavalier as defined by my boys school changing-room etiquette. You showed your willy and that put you in either the Roundhead or Cavalier camp. We were only 5 years old and there were no teachers involved!
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