Sword and the Rose, The (film)

Sword and the Rose, The (film) An adventure tale set in England during the reign of King Henry VIII. Charles Brandon, a handsome young commoner, becomes attached to the court and falls in love with the King’s sister and political pawn, Mary Tudor. When Henry discovers this, Brandon is banished and Mary is sent off to marry the aging Louis of France, but when the French king dies, Mary extracts a promise from Henry to let her choose her second husband and she happily marries Brandon. Released on July 23, 1953. Directed by Ken Annakin. 92 min. Despite its historical inaccuracy, the film was a success due to the acting talents of Richard Todd (Charles Brandon), Glynis Johns (Mary Tudor), James Robertson Justice (King Henry VIII), Michael Gough (Duke of Buckingham), Jean Mercure (Louis XII), and the wizardry of Peter Ellenshaw’s over 60 matte paintings that helped give the film the feel of Tudor England. It was the third and most elaborate of the Disney live-action features made in England to use up blocked funds that Disney could not take out of the country. It aired on television in 1956 as When Knighthood Was in Flower, the title of the book on which the film was based. Released on video in 1985 and 1993.