Sunday, March 9, 2008

Nobody expects the Spanish Armada!

Did anybody catch Cate Blanchett's latest turn as Elizabeth? It had one of my favorite lines from a recent screenplay. As the Spanish Armada approaches, Elizabeth's astrologer, John Dee, predicts the imminent fall of a great empire. Understandably, Elizabeth would like some details about precisely which empire he's talking about. However, Dee cannot say more, explaining that unfortunately "astrology is still more of an art than a science."

I once visited Hatfield House, where Elizabeth was briefly imprisoned. There's a great portrait of her there -- the "Rainbow Portrait" -- wearing a gown decorated with eyes and ears (because the queen sees all and hears all in her realm). Turns out that some of the film was shot there.



At March 10, 2008 at 9:29 AM , Blogger Madame Leiderhosen said...

Yep, I saw the movie opening weekend . Although the first film was more solid, Clive Owen is such a biscuit and the Queen in armor was breathtaking. They completely glossed over the fact that the intrepid and devoted Walsingham died terribly in debt, as he paid for the best spies out of his own pocket.

Here's the portrait. The snake on the sleeve is fantastic. All the symbols worked into portraits are so fascinating, as well as the details on the clothing. I came across her father's portrait over the weekend ans was thinking the same thing. ("Hallo, codpiece! Hallo, dynastic skirt-chasing megalomaniac!")


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