'In Their Own Words: Queen Elizabeth II'
(DVD / NR / 2015 / PBS)
Overview: Follow Queen Elizabeth II's remarkable life, from her youth when few expected she'd ever wear the crown to her uncle Edward VIII's stunning abdication, and her father's subsequent coronation as King George VI. Witness her experiences during World War II, her own sudden ascension to the throne, and her eventful reign of more than 60 years.
DVD Verdict: PBS has been running a series titled “In Their Own Words” and this November they have released one entitled 'Queen Elizabeth II'. The subject of this 56-minute “biographical portrait” is the longest serving monarch, Queen Elizabeth II. Produced and directed by the same company and using rare archival film footage with “sound bites,” as well posting the text of quotes attributed to these persons (hence the series title), "In Their Own Words" is a highly interesting new documentary series.
The Queen is still living, of course, and is now 89 years old. I was in elementary school when she was crowned as the Queen in 1952 and I remember our class going to a student’s home where there was a television to watch the coronation. But I found I learned a lot from this hour long show which literally bring us up to September9, 2015 – literally a few weeks before the show was completed.
The interviewees include former Prime Minister John Major, Steven Frears (the Director of the docu-drama “The Queen”), the Director of the film “The King’s Speech” about Elizabeth’s father, King George VI, a few of her biographers, both President George H.W. Bush and his wife Barbara , Actor Ben Kingsley and the Queen’s cousin! There is a lot of rare archival footage of the young Queen (when she was a Princess) giving a speech. The discussion of her raising her four children and how she handled Princess Diana’s death is handled even well. There are no bonus or special features on the DVD, but it does have the option for English subtitles; but is not close captioned. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.