Whether you want to relax after a bustling street party or you don’t plan on leaving the sofa the entire bank holiday, this list is for you.
The course leader at the MetFilm School, Justin Trefgarne, has rounded up his top ten Royalty themed films ( in no particular order) to mark the occasion.
Mr Trefagarne said: “Love them or loathe them, the Royal Family in its various forms has been entertaining, enthralling and fascinating us for centuries.
“The British Monarchy’s catalogue of blood feuds, forbidden love affairs, wars, abdications and endless scandals has supplied material for the writers of every age.
“From Shakespeare’s thinly disguised commentaries on Elizabeth and James I respectively to Peter Morgan’s reimagining of the Royals as high-end Soap Opera in The Crown, the audience for these gilded dramas has never waned.”
Top 10 Royal films to watch over the Platinum Jubilee weekend
Kristen Stewart brings her own brand of sparkle and unpredictability to this intense, poetic take on Princess Diana. Whether Diana was really like this or not is sort of missing the point.
Trefgarne describes Pablo Larraín’s film as a tightly wound character study of a woman unravelling under intense pressure.
The 2021 historical movie “plays out as much as a psychological horror as it does conventional drama, he adds.
Admittedly, it is quite rare to find Her Majesty Elizabeth II at the centre of a movie narrative but the 2006 film The Queen is one of them.
Helen Mirren plays the Queen in semi-exile after the death of Diana as she faces crossroads in her reign and a stag that haunts her estate in the Scottish Highlands.
In the role that won her the 2006 Academy Award for Best Actress, Mirren transcends as a Queen in semi-exile after the death of Diana, Trefgarne reviews.
Radical choice of director (Shekhar Kapur): tick. Young actress ready for super-stardom (Cate Blanchet): tick. The rise of Elizabeth retold as The Godfather: tick.
Trefgarne picks this 1998 period film as one for all the ages.
Trefgarne was a bit “on the fence about Timothée Chalamet” ( but we’ll forgive him!) until he tried The King.
“It’s astonishing. His spindly, hungover, sad rendition of Prince Hal slowly morphs into something raw, timeless and utterly believable,” he adds.
MetFilm School also noted Joel Edgerton and David Michôd’s masterful retelling of the ‘Henriad’, describing it as “a compelling, epic grip that makes it one of the best historical films since Gladiator”.
It was this role that cemented Judi Dench’s reputation as one of the world’s most accomplished screen actors, according to Trefgarne.
He applauded her moving portrayal of a grieving Queen Victori but noted that perhaps the film’s biggest surprise was the unexpected, nuanced performance from beloved Scottish comedian Billy Connolly.
The Lion In Winter
The Lion In Winter brings together the titanic screen presences of Katherine Hepburn and Peter O’Toole for “a heady dose of relationship fireworks” and it was well worth putting on your watch list for the Bank Holiday
Trefgarne adds that “they really don’t make ‘em like this any more” and if you are in need of another reason, you can also see the prolific Anthony Hopkins making his screen debut.
A Man For All Seasons
Trefgarne was forced to watch this at school and was apparently ready to write it off until the genius of writer Robert Bolt’s characters and the play’s moral conscience completely captivated him.
The film is as relevant now as it was when first released making it the perfect addition to your binge-watch queue over the celebrations.
Trefgarne tells yes to watch out for a late-period Orson Welles who is seen filling up the frame with his interpretation of Cardinal Wolsey.
The Madness Of King George
This 1994 British biographical historical comedy-drama depicts a King descending into ‘madness’ only to be retrieved from the abyss by a radical form of treatment.
The film is “gentle, funny, heartbreaking and sumptuous all at once, this is British period filmmaking at its finest,” Trefgarne reviews.
Viceroy’s House is a “brilliant, bold dismantling of the accepted history of the Queen’s Uncle’s attempt at managing the Partition between India and Pakistan, “Trefgarne explains.
Directed by Gurinder Chadha, Trefgarne also commends Moria Bufini and Chadha’s masterful script which “weaves the political and the personal together seamlessly to challenge and confront the dissolution of the ‘British Raj’.
Not to mention it stars Downton Abbey’s Hugh Bonneville, Sex Education’s Gillian Anderson and The Resident’s Manish Dayal.
Sid & Nancy
Rounding out the list, the 1996 musical drama Sid & Nancy depicts the success ( and the fallout ) of The Sex Pistols.
Not to mention, no Royal celebration is complete without an airing of their alternative jubilee anthem, ‘God Save The Queen’.
Walk down memory lane with the film that launched the careers of Oscar Winners Gary Oldman, Roger Deakins, maverick director Alex Cox and Working Title chief Eric Fellner.