Friday, January 7, 2011

Fall of Eagles- Ep. 1 Death Waltz

Early in 2010, I was looking in the library for something to watch, I think I was looking for X-men, and I've mistaken Prof. Charles on the cover.  I ended up taking it home and immediately put in the player.  I was sucked in, mainly and mostly because of the acting.  It is a nice way to learn some actual history, instead of the normal, detail-less, and poor acting shows put on TV. 

The beginning starts out like your regular History/Discovery channel program, with some grand waltz music.  Then we have the Emperor of Austria, Franz Josef, signing away peoples lives, and then enjoying his life with some mistresses. We then begin with the emperors mother, the Archduchess Sophie(above), looking for a suitable wife her beloved baby.  I have to say that the Archduchess looks hysterical for some reason.  A very wise choice for an actor to play the part of a powerful person.  Pamela Brown comes out strong and quite scary, but her look just makes me laugh. 

Niece to the Archduchess, Helene, was to be the new empress, but to Sophie's dismay, Helene's younger sister, attracted her more.  Sophie knew that Helene would be more fit for Franz, because she is more responsible.  Whilst Helene's sister, Elisabeth is your typical American teenager, always complaining about the one too many restrictions.  In fact, the whole episode, she is followed around to show us how much she mopes. I feel for her freedom, and I think she has some right, but the others around her, including her sister Helena, tell her what a spoiled brat she is.
 This whole episode is mainly around Elisabeth, but at least everyone else gets to play their role as often as her.  The character interaction, the script, and the assertiveness of the actors is very intriging.  I never see this type of screenplay in America.  There is never a slow moment.  There is no intention of being comical, but the lines and the way they are said are funny. 
I like how Franz is against his mother.  She is right, which is what makes everyone stubborn.  It was funny when Sophie said  that he can sleep with Elisabeth, but must marry Helene.  Which is what Franz should have done, because he still has his affairs after marriage.  At least he wouldn't have been stuck with a whiny wife. 

I don't feel that this show was meant to be a history lesson, it probably wasn't as this was created by Josh Elliot.  I look forward to trying some of his other works.  This is more like a day in the royals house.  There are plenty of narrations as to what is going on around and outside the Hapsburg.  I am still lost in all the info, but I am enjoying the show.  It's funny that everything "CiCi" (Elisabeth) does is to conflict with the monster-in-law.  CiCi to connect the with dogs of Hungary, offensive, not accepting her duty, weak, always unhappy with her current situation, childish. 
Diane Keen plays our depressed empress very well.  She looks like Julia Roberts. I like the whole cast so far.  I don't think anything should keep you from watching this.  Go to the library and get it. 

I laugh at that face.

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