Flash Movie Review: Mary Queen of Scots

THE TWO DID NOT KNOW EACH OTHER. They grew up in different cities and on the surface did not seem to have any similarities. I only knew of them because they were in one of my writing classes in college. The class was rather intense, where we were expected to turn in writing assignments on a weekly basis. Every Wednesday the professor would randomly choose a few students to read their papers out loud, so the class could have a discussion and critique session on the students’ works. After several weeks it became apparent to me and most of the class that these 2 students were focused on writing horror stories. As some of you might know, I am not a fan of movies that show a lot of bloody gore. As you might expect the same holds true for fiction stories. As the semester continued these two fans of horror started competing with each other; nothing overt, but each week their stories got gorier and gorier. It was as if they were in a battle to see who would be the “king of horror” as far as I could tell. I had a hard time listening to them when either one was chosen to read their stories to the class.      I NEVER FOUND OUT WHAT WAS the impetus that drove those two students to compete against each other. Honestly, I have always had a hard time trying to figure out why people want to compete. This may be one of the reasons why I was never very good in several sport activities. I do not have that driving force inside of me to dominate and beat another person, just so I can be considered the best. The only person I am in competition with is myself. Overcoming one set of circumstances to get to where I am at today has been a fight every day. The way I look at it is this: my old self battles the new me, trying to push me back down to what I used to be. Hopefully I am making sense to you; but let me tell you, this struggle between the old and new me has been a major force that has pushed me to heights I thought I would never achieve in this lifetime. With my thinking I wonder if humans in general are predisposed to competing. I think the term is, “Survival of the fitness.” Another phrase I have heard is, “Only the strong will survive.” Is this a genetic thing? I do not know, but this historical drama will show you how fierce competition can be.      RETURNING TO HER HOME IN SCOTLAND after her husband had died; Mary Stuart, played by Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird, The Lovely Bones), believed she could lead her people as their queen. The main issue concerning her belief was the fact there was already a queen on the throne from the House of Tudor and her name was Elizabeth I, played by Margot Robbie (I, Tonya; Suicide Squad). This biographical film also starred Jack Lowden (Dunkirk, Tommy’s Honour) as Henry Darnley, James McArdle (The Chamber, Star Wars: The Force Awakens) as James, Earl of Moray and David Tennant (Bad Samaritan, Doctor Who-TV) as John Knox. This picture was all about the acting and I thought both Saoirse and Margot were wonderful. Because of them I stayed engaged with this story that I believe took a lot of liberty with actual history. Those who enjoy history might like this picture more than non-history lovers. There were some scenes that were farfetched and almost a distraction. It was a shame because I think the writers might have been competing with the Game of Thrones series when they were writing this script.


2 ½ stars


About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on December 21, 2018, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. I have ever loved competition, yet it seems that our current society is based only on it and fosters it,

  2. The historical inaccuracies in the trailer alone make me wince so I’m not sure I could cope with seeing the full movie. The casting seems perfect so I had hoped this movie would be worth seeing. I have to decide whether to put myself through all the storytelling liberties to enjoy the two central performances.

  3. LOL to Laura’s comment. I understand. Since I’m unfamiliar with the details of the story, just knowing ahead of time that there are inaccuracies will force me to look it up… after seeing it, otherwise I might not go.

    • See my other comments about seeing this again with someone who corrected my assumptions. If you see this one please let me know. A happy and healthy new year to you and yours.

  4. The trailer reminds me of watching Titanic. The only thing real about it was the details of the way the interior of the ship looked, fate of 2nd class and the ship sank.

    • I went to see this one again with an Anglophile who enlightened me with what was real, which was more than I assumed. Thanks for the comments.

      • Her life fascinated me at a very young age. She was one of the few strong women in history that couldn’t be downplayed, vilified, or skimmed over. People all around me were saying, “Women are too emotional to be leaders.” And yet when I pointed her out as an example I was told, “There’s always an exception.”

  5. Sadly, I think that all historical films now take liberties with the accepted facts. This is a pity because although one can enjoy the film because the individual acting is so good (as in Mary, Queen of Scots and The Favourite), one is left feeling dissatisfied and slightly cheated. So much money spent on effects and costumes when if some of that money had been spent allowing the screenwriter(s) to research the tale and allowing them time to write the true story, it would be so much better. An interesting idea, that they are competing with Game of Thrones. I hadn’t thought of that.
    Been reading all your reviews. Great, I like your voice and your take on them.

  6. I personally thought the film was really good, and even thought the film had some historical inaccuracies, it was a film and not a documentary. Im studying a part of this era for a level history and it helps with backstory of the basics of what happened. It also shows how both Queens were powerful on their own, which its often shows in history books…

    • Hello and thank you for stopping by to leave your comments. I am glad you enjoyed this well acted film. Also, I assume with your knowledge from your studies, you had a different reaction to the film that helped you get into it.

  7. Great review! I’ve been wanting to see this movie and hoping it sheds some light on the struggles these women faced.

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