|THE EXILE (director: Max Ophuls (Max Opuls); screenwriters: from the novel "His Majesty, the King" by Cosmo Hamilton/Douglas Fairbanks Jr./Clemence Dane; cinematographer: Frank Planer; editor: Ted J. Kent; music: Frank Skinner; cast: Douglas Fairbanks Jr. (Charles Stuart), Maria Montez (The Countess), Paula Croset (Katie), Henry Daniell (Colonel Ingram), Nigel Bruce (Sir Edward Hyde), Robert Coote (Pinner), Otto Waldis (Jan), Lumsden Hare (Roundhead General), Milton A. Owen (Wilcox); Runtime: 95; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Douglas Fairbanks Jr.; Universal-International; 1947)|
|"Engaging breezy cloak and sword
by Dennis Schwartz
noted French filmmaker Max Ophuls ("La
Ronde"/"The Earrings of Madame de…"/"Caught"),
in his first American movie, drops the h from his last
name and directs this engaging breezy cloak and sword
adventure film. It's based on the
novel "His Majesty, the King" by Cosmo
Hamilton and is written, but not that well, by Douglas
Fairbanks Jr. and Clemence Dane.
It tells of the English king, Charles Stuart
II, living in Holland in exile before the Restoration
in 1660. It has more talk than action. It was released
in theaters in sepia (giving it a brown tint).
in exile in Holland and hiding from Cromwell's men,
Charles Stuart (Douglas Fairbanks Jr.)
falls in love with the Dutch farm girl Katie (Paula Croset)
and finds sanctuary in her inn. By the way, it's a
fictionalized romance. The king must be wary to avoid
the Roundheads (Cromwell's agents). The
most bloodthirsty Cromwell supporter is the
black-hatted Colonel Ingram (Henry Daniell), a
vile man who was sent by Cromwell to slay the banished
Charles Stuart tells his questioning local lover that
his former flame, the countess (Maria Montez), no
longer matters, and he tell his followers: “You
all know my terms as well as I: we’ll go home when
we are freely called, by all our countrymen — and
not one day before!”.
In noteworthy supporting roles are Nigel Bruce as Charles' chief aide and Robert Coote playing an actor who impersonates the king.
crowd-pleasing written historical drama, more mundane
than it should be, is saved by the sensuous camerawork
of Max Ophuls. For some gravitas it turns on the
reflections of the king, recalling those days of
romance and examining in earnest his sense of duty.
It's far from a great film, but it has Ophuls's
magnificent visual style to make it marginally
passable as entertainment for the commoners.
REVIEWED ON 1/4/2015 GRADE: B-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ