Portrait of the Queen Review – Intimate Look at The Most Photographed Woman in the World

Portrait of the Queen, from Nexo Digital, presents an intimate look at Queen Elizabeth II, through the lens of those who captured the iconic images that turned the timid princess into the representation of Britain and the UK.

The documentary begins with narrator Charles Dance, seen only in black and white, introducing the Queen Elizabeth II through the nearly 100 years of images that are available of her. The documentary begins to interview the Britain's commoners, those who are most loyal to the crown, and as some say, "I may not like everything about England, but I love the Queen."

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Queen Elizabeth II generated that response, from everyone. The documentary explains through man on the street interviews, everyone felt a twinge of empathy for her, forced into a role she never truly wanted, and was essentially bound to duty without option. Many often think the tradeoff for fame or financial affluence is the fishbowl life, the Queen had no choice, and her subjects understood and were fiercely loyal because of it.

The documentary focuses on each of The Queen's most intense, intimate, faithful portraits, symbols of 20th-century history. And of course, as the documentary focuses on those portraits it also focuses on those who photographed her.

The documentary presents behind the scenes revelations from those photographers who were called up to capture her image, with stories from Brian Aris, Jason Bell, Julian Calder, Chris Levine, David Montgomery, and John Swannell. These memories also include a photographer's tricks of the trade as they attempt to elicit a different image or possibly something that would show a different side to The Queen.

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We also hear from those who met Queen Elizabeth, including Isabella Rossellini, and Susan Sarandon, each providing personal insights, and more so we understand the idea of forever being told to smile, the camera is always on, and the challenges of living in front of the camera.

As she was the most photographed, the most loved and talked about, spied upon, praised, criticized, popular woman on the planet every moment of her long life, there were those who wanted a more intimate audience with her and for many the millions of images sedated that desire.

We also meet Emma Blau, a historian and curator of the largest, family-owned collection of images of the Royal family, featuring pictures of all members of the Royal Family, and taken by all members of the family.

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Portrait of the Queen offers an original portrayal of the story of The Queen from a totally new perspective: through the most intense, amazing, revealing photographic portraits of her, as shared by the extraordinary photographers who accompanied and often created the image of the British monarchy itself.

Portrait of the Queen is a must see for Royal watchers everywhere. And more for those to realize life isn't always as perfect as the image portrays.

Insightful, intimate, and sincere, Portrait of the Queen, a fitting tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, is available digitally September 5, 2023. See it.

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Country: U.K.

Language: English.

Runtime: 77 minutes.

Director: Fabrizio Ferri.

Narrator: Charles Dance.

Writer: Paola Calvetti, based on the best seller Elisabetta II: Ritratto di Regina by Paola Calvetti.

Cast: Brian Aris, Jason Bell, Julian Calder, Chris Levine, David Montgomery, John Swannell, with additional interviews with Susan Sarandon, Isabella Rossellini, curator Emma Blau and stylist Pierpaolo Piccioli. 

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