A Vatican-backed historian has attacked the film Elizabeth: The Golden Age as a “distorted anti-papal travesty” that risks dividing the West just when it should be rediscovering its “common Christian roots” in the face of Islam.
Writing in Avvenire, the official organ of the Italian Bishops’ Conference, Franco Cardini said that the film formed part of a “concerted attack on Catholicism” by atheists and “apocalyptic Christians”.
....Professor Cardini said “a film which so profoundly and perversely falsifies history cannot be judged a good film”. It had potentially offered “a contribution to the understanding of a moment of vital importance.”
Instead, the Virgin Queen was portrayed as “an able politician and courageous sovereign” while King Philip II of Spain was shown as a “ferocious, fanatical Catholic, swinging his rosary like a weapon and roaming the Escorial Palace like a madman, full of impotent fury, dreaming of subjugating the world to the Catholic faith”.
The defeat of Spain’s “invincible armada” in 1588 was caused by a storm but was presented in the film as a “shining victory for free thought against the forces of darkness in the form of the Inquisition”, Professor Cardini said.