Monarchy - The Royal Family at Work
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42 of 42 found the following review helpful:
The Queen At Her Best Nov 28, 2008
By John D. Cofield
Since 1969 The Queen has allowed cameras to film her and her family's private lives for documentaries several times. I've watched all of these and found them fairly interesting, but none really gave me the sense that I was really watching the Windsors "behind the scenes". There was always the feeling that they were posing for the camera and on their best behavior, as indeed they have to be most of the time. But in Monarchy: The Royal Family At Work"I really felt for the first time that I was seeing the Royal Family as they truly are: a rather ordinary group of people required by the circumstance of their birth to be placed on a pedestal, but who don't really take themselves all that seriously. I saw this particularly with The Queen herself. Now that she's in her 80s, and after going through what must have been a pretty rotten time of it for the last twenty five years or so, she seems more relaxed and informal than I've ever seen her. She smiles at the camera, makes little asides from time to time, and generally seems to be enjoying herself. I particularly liked the scenes showing a State Visit to Buckingham Palace when an elevator had broken down, and The Queen was shown scurrying around and actually hanging over a bannister to see how her guests were going to get upstairs (eventually she laughed and told us "they're coming up in the staff lift!") I also enjoyed another scene where The Queen reminded us of how regal she can be when the photographer Annie Liebowitz had the temerity to ask her to take off her tiara because it was too dressy. The Queen snorted and said "What do you think this is?" gesturing at her Garter robes.
Another appealing aspect of this series is its focus on the preparations others make for The Queen when she makes an appearance, and how every detail is meticulously taken care of. Other segments deal with the servants who wait on The Queen, allowing us more insight into the running of a palace and how humdrum it can be, no matter how glamourous the settings may be.
Queen Elizabeth II's public life has been exhaustively chronicled almost from the moment of her birth. Now in this series we can get, for possibly the first time, a real sense of her as a private person.
16 of 16 found the following review helpful:
A film which shows one year of unprecedented access to Queen Elizabeth and her family. Feb 22, 2009
By J. Lesley
This superb five part series was a true delight for me. I have to admit to a fascination with the British Royal Family. I understand that is not necessarily a popular opinion in Britian or in America but I have always admired Queen Elizabeth for her steadfast sense of purpose and her willingness to continue placing herself in the public light when it isn't any longer necessary to do so. To watch an institution such as the royal family at work was entertaining and instructive and, at times, just plain fun. The film crew was allowed unprecedented access over a one year period to the daily life of this woman who at 81 (at the time of filming) had been on the throne for 55 years.
This BBC series is presented in five parts as follows, with each part being approximately one hour in length.
1. THE STATE VISIT - This episode shows the Queen both in front of and behind the cameras during a State Visit to the United States. Included are the State Dinner in Washington, a private luncheon in the White House, two functions at the British Embassy in Washington, a visit to Williamsburg, Virginia with a stay at the Williamsburg Inn in Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown Colony, Richmond, Virginia and a side trip to the Kentucky Derby.
2. HEADQUARTERS - Here the focus is mainly on Buckingham Palace and the arrangements necessary for a State Visit from the Nigerian President and his wife. It was exceedingly interesting to watch how hands-on the Queen was in all matters even down to trying to help figure out why the lift wasn't working.
3. HEAD OF STATE - Because the Queen is head of a constitutional monarchy she is still considered Head of Parliament (although in name only), the Armed Forces and the Church of England. This segment focused on the preperations for the Opening of Parliament, the speech given by the Queen, and her association with various branches of the military.
4. THE QUEEN AND US - The annual Garden Party hosted by Her Majesty was presented from the viewpoint of some of those invited to attend. This segment focused most often on the Queen and her changing connections with British subjects. At one very, very small day-care center she was so intimate with those parents and children that one child threw a ball which rolled right to the Queen. She resisted the temptation to play ball with the child!
5. INSIDE THE FIRM - This is the episode which features other members of the Royal Family. We see both Prince William and Prince Harry in very informal meetings with charities of which they are patrons and other Royals in slightly more formal settings. One of my favorites was when Prince Charles went to visit a small farm and had tea around the kitchen table from a tea set which was good enough for the family so why not use it to serve him? Lovely!
There is also a 30 minute bonus section showing footage not presented during the other five segments. Some were cute, some funny, but I found all of them extremely enlightening. As I would expect from any BBC production, this film is incredibly wonderful from a technical aspect.
If you are not a fan of the present Queen of England or a system of Monarchy in general, this series will not change your mind. I, on the other hand, was simply amazed to be allowed to watch the members of this family go about their daily lives while making their total of 4,000 appearances within a one year period. No matter what you may think about this Monarchy, they do much more than many people are aware of.
24 of 27 found the following review helpful:
A greater understanding... Jul 01, 2008
Let me preface this review with the fact that I have never really understood the level of fascination that some folks have for 'the royal family'. Let me then say that having watched the abridged version of this on ABC earlier in the year (Feb 08 I believe) really took me by surprise, as I found myself totally riveted to the goings on... the pomp of it all... the wondrous ceremony of everything.
The abridged version was entitled "The Royal Family" and ran some 90 minutes with Barbara Walters slipped in as narrator. This DVD version will be released in its full-length original glory as created for the BBC and while I would never have predicted it about myself, I am totally looking forward to seeing it. Original British narration should lend more credence to a program that takes the viewer inside royal life in epic proportion.
If I were king of the forest.....
10 of 11 found the following review helpful:
Great Insight Jul 01, 2008
This is illuminating five part series which was originally broadcasted on ABC as the abridged special "The Royal Family" provides great insight into the work of the Queen and the other members of her family throughout the span of one year. It shows exclusive access to other members of the royal family, including Prince William, Prince Charles and Prince Harry.
If I'm not mistaken in November 2008 this series will be broadcasted nationally on PBS, adding to the already 14.2 million viewers who have watched it on ABC. Unlike any other dvd about the royal family, this one surely uncovers their lives away from the glare of the public eye.
3 of 3 found the following review helpful:
"Monarchy ... The Royal Family at Work (2007) ... Koch Vision (2008)" Dec 07, 2008
By J. Lovins
Koch Vision and BBC presents "MONARCHY: THE ROYAL FAMILY AT WORK" (26 November 2007) (330 mins/Color) (Dolby digitally remastered) -- Join Queen Elizabeth for a exclusive look at the royal family and the modern monarchy --- In the year of her 80th birthday, Queen Elizabeth II granted the filmmakers of "Monarchy: The Royal Family at Work" an exclusive look inside the modern British monarchy --- In this intimate series, viewers join Queen Elizabeth II and the rest of Britain's most famous family as they travel abroad, work at the palace, and meet people from all walks of life --- he program follows the Queen as she visits the first permanent British settlement in the U.S. and spends time with President Bush at the White House --- The cameras also roll as she visits the newly democratic republic of Estonia -- where no British monarch has set foot before --- Back in England, the series goes inside Buckingham Palace for exclusive interviews with members of the royal family, preparations for elaborate formal occasions, and a behind-the-scenes look at the royal kitchens, the royal wine cellar, the royal car fleet and the jobs of footmen, ladies in waiting, the Yeoman of the Guard and the crown jeweler. "Monarchy: The Royal Family at Work" offers a glimpse behind the velvet curtain to reveal what life is really like as a member of the family firm.
Under the production staff of:
Matt Reid - Director
Denys Blakeway - executive producer
Martin Davidson - executive producer: BBC
Andy Goodsir - executive producer: HTI
Robert Hardman - associate producer
Matt Reid - series producer
Freya Sampson - producer
Samuel Sim - Original Music
Nick Fry - dubbing mixer
Chris Sheedy - sound recordist
Ross Sellwood - music supervisor
Monarchy: The Royal Family at Work: Series of Episodes:
Episodes 1 & 2:
The State Visit - (Follow the elaborate preparations in Virginia and Britain as the Queen gets ready to visit America)
Headquarters - (Behind the scenes at Buckingham Palace, the nerve center of the British monarchy)
Head of State - (Queen Elizabeth performs her royal duties as the symbolic leader of the British Government)
The Queen and Us - (The Queen maintains her bond with the British public)
Inside the Firm - (A look at life as a member of the royal family)
1. Queen Elizabeth II (aka: Elizabeth Alexandra Mary (Her Royal Highness Princess Elizabeth Alexandra Mary of York)
Date of Birth: 21 April 1926 - London, England, UK
Date of Death: Still Living
2. Prince Philip (aka: Philippos Andreou of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderberg-Glücksburg Prince of Greece and Denmark)
Date of Birth: 10 June 1921 - Villa of Mon Repos, Corfu, Greece
Date of Death: Still Living
3. Prince Charles (aka: Charles Philip Arthur George Mountbatten)
Date of Birth: 14 November 1948 - Buckingham Palace, Westminster, London, England, UK
Date of Death: Still Living
the cast includes:
Queen Elizabeth II
Cate Blanchett - Narrator
Prince Harry Windsor
Prince William Windsor
1. Includes an additional exclusive 30 minutes of previously unseen footage on this 2-DVD set.
Great job by Koch Vision --- looking forward to more high quality titles from their film market --- order your copy now from Amazon or Koch Vision where there are plenty of copies available on DVD, stay tuned once again for top notch releases --- where they are experts in releasing long forgotten films and treasures to the collector.
Total Time: 330 mins on DVD ~ KOCH 6546 ~ (9/02/2008)
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