To Kill a King

To Kill a King

Mike Barker (2003)

12A Certificate


Our Score
This historical drama from director Mike Barker begins as the English Civil War ends, focusing on the relationship between the Parliamentarians' brilliant military commander, Thomas Fairfax (Dougray Scott), and his deputy, Oliver Cromwell (Tim Roth). An aristocrat by birth, Fairfax finds himself torn between Cromwell and his wife, Lady Anne Fairfax (Olivia Williams). The former seems determined to accept nothing less than the head of King Charles I, the latter refuses to abandon old friends and standards. Despite woefully stilted dialogue, this is a fascinating if controversial history lesson - the King's blood is shown to be literally on Cromwell's hands. Although the role is little more than an extended cameo, Charles (Rupert Everett) dominates the story, strutting around with the haughtiness of one who believes himself chosen by God - even in captivity - and towering over the diminutive upstart Cromwell. Alongside characters as powerful as these, Scott's Fairfax seems so bland in comparison.


In the aftermath of the English Civil War, King Charles I has been imprisoned and his fate now hangs in the balance. However, the decision over whether to have him executed or show mercy divides revolutionary leaders Fairfax and Cromwell, while in parliament, plans are afoot to make a deal with the deposed monarch. Historical drama, starring Tim Roth, Dougray Scott and Rupert Everett.

Cast & Crew

Oliver Cromwell Tim Roth
Thomas Fairfax Dougray Scott
King Charles I Rupert Everett
Lady Anne Fairfax Olivia Williams
Denzil Holles, Speaker of the House James Bolam
Lord De Vere, Lady Anne's father Corin Redgrave
Mrs Cromwell Patricia Kerrigan
Director Mike Barker
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: PathéGuidance: Contains some violence.Available on: video and DVDReleased on: 16 May 2003