Nearly a decade after Cate Blanchett drew the attention of audiences and critics alike with ELIZABETH, the Oscar-winning actress returns to the role of the Virgin Queen. Though the protestant ruler has been on the throne for decades in 1585, Elizabeth I's reign is still under attack from both inside her country and from the continent. Her cousin, Mary, Queen of Scots (Samantha Morton), carries the favor of the nation's Catholics as she schemes for the throne from prison, while Spain's King Philip II (Jordi Molla) plots an invasion with the power of his famous armada. But Elizabeth is also concerned with the arrival of Sir Walter Raleigh (Clive Owen), a charming pirate and adventurer. Unable to reconcile her feelings with her crown, she encourages Bess (Abbie Cornish), her beloved lady-in-waiting, to pursue a relationship with Raleigh.
Nine years haven't dulled Blanchett's ability to play this--or any other--character with an impressive range of fire and tenderness. Her chemistry with the infinitely watchable Owen is one of the film's highlights. As in ELIZABETH, director Shekhar Kapur doesn't restrict himself from using artfully constructed shots that aren't normally used in period dramas. It's a modern retelling of history, and Kapur and his director of photograpy, Remi Adefarasin, aren't content to let the film have the standard look of many films in the genre. Costume designer Alexandra Byrne follows the same logic, creating stunning dresses for Elizabeth that draw inspiration both from modernity and the time period. If Blanchett weren't such a gifted actress, the gorgeous costumes might threaten to overtake her as the star of the film.
2007 - Academy Awards - Best Costume Design Winner
A.R. Rahman - Composer, PROVOKED (2007)
Allah Rakha Rahman - Composer, PROVOKED (2007)
A.R. Rehman - Composer, PROVOKED (2007)
Jordi Molla - Spanish Actor/"Jamón..."
Rhys Ifans - British actor, NOTTING HILL
Shekhar Kapur - Director/"Bandit Queen"
Jenny Shircore - MAKEUP/HAIR DESIGNER
Clive Owen - British actor, CLOSER
Abbie Cornish - Actress, MONKEY'S MASK (2001)
Michael Hirst - SCREENWRITER
Cate Blanchett - Australian Actress
Alexandra Byrne - COSTUME DESIGNER
Remi Adefarasin - Director of Photography
Craig Armstrong - Composer
Eric Fellner - Producer
Geoffrey Rush - Australian Actor, QUILLS (2000)
Samantha Morton - Actress
William Nicholson - Screenwriter
Theatrical Release: October 12, 2007
"Like the first film, ELIZABETH: THE GOLDEN AGE boasts strong acting and handsome decor....Blanchett's Elizabeth remains a commanding presence..." - 11/01/2007 Box Office, p.110
3 stars out of 5 -- "Blanchett is peerless throughout, perfectly combining public poise with private doubt..." - 11/01/2007 Total Film, p.62
3 stars out of 5 -- "[I]t is in the intimate moments that the film finds its heart....Cate Blanchett again excels..." - 10/19/2007 Empire, p.62
"[With] wonderfully detailed and vivid production and some excellent performances....[Blanchett] brings depth and subtlety to the role." - 12/01/2007 Sight and Sound, p.60
"[With] the ever-brilliant Cate Blanchett....Gorgeous moments and a fine script..." - 04/01/2008 Uncut, p.126