Nicholas and Alexandra

Watch Nicholas and Alexandra

" the story of the love that changed the world forever!"
  • GP
  • 1971
  • 3 hr 9 min
  • 7.2  (5,536)
  • 57

In 1971, Franklin J. Schaffner directed the historical drama film titled Nicholas and Alexandra. The film depicts the story of the monarchs Nicholas II, the last Tsar of Russia, and his wife Alexandra, who ruled over the country during the period of great disruption and revolution. The movie follows the couple's life, their ascension to the throne, their deposed and their fall out of grace with the Russian people.

Michael Jayston played the role of Nicholas II, portraying him as someone who appeared much more comfortable with his wife and children than with making political decisions. Janet Suzman portrayed the role of Alexandra, the czarina, who was dedicated to her husband, to her children, and to her faith. Roderic Noble played a supporting role as Grigori Rasputin, the lecherous but charismatic spiritual advisor to the czarina.

The film opened in 1894 when Nicholas II's father, Alexander III, dies. The newly crowned czar married Alexandra, the granddaughter of Queen Victoria of England, in 1895, and their union produced four daughters and a son. The movie portrayed the challenges they had to face, with poor government leadership and their son's medical condition being quite severe, thereby affecting the low morale of the people. In 1914, Russia joined World War I, and things only got worse.

The film depicts the events leading up to Nicholas abdication of the throne. It effectively captures the tensions between the royal family and the Russian people and how their external woes became their downfall. The movie also painted a picture of the Tsar and his wife being out of touch with what the people needed and how they were viewed during that turbulent period. Nicholas was portrayed as a weak and indecisive ruler who struggled to keep his grasp on power even as events spiraled out of control.

The effects of the war were desolating, and Alexandra's reaction to it only aggravated the situation. She became increasingly isolated and turned to mysticism and clairvoyants to help influence her decision making. The portrayal of the czarina as aloof and badly able to make wise and timely decisions contributed to the eventual fall of the autocracy.

Grigori Rasputin, played eloquently by Roderic Noble, became an instrumental character that moved the film's plot forward. The depiction of Rasputin as a cynical opportunist using his supposed magical powers to manipulate Alexandra is evident throughout the movie. Rasputin's story added the necessary spice to a movie that beautifully depicted the events leading up to the Bolshevik revolution and the tragic fate of the Romanovs.

The film's visuals were strikingly stunning, with great camera work to match the palaces, the countryside, and the Russian countryside. The costumes were elaborate, complex, and detailed, and the cinematography conveyed an overall richness that created a vivid sense of the times. It is quite fascinating to see the incredible collaboration between Schaffner, the art director John Box, and the costume designer Yvonne Blake.

Overall, "Nicholas and Alexandra" is an epic historical drama with heartwarming performances that depicts the distinct styles and times of Nicholas II reign. Schaffner captured the audience's attention by showing the imperial court's lavish life to begin, then gradually bringing in more drama as the country falls apart. The movie's critical acclaim was well-deserved, as it managed to stay true to historical events while keeping the emotional aspects intact. It is an excellent film for those interested in historical drama and those looking for a fresh perspective on old events.

Nicholas and Alexandra is a 1971 drama with a runtime of 3 hours and 9 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2 and a MetaScore of 57.

Nicholas and Alexandra
Where to Watch Nicholas and Alexandra
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    3 hr 9 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.2  (5,536)
  • Metascore