Ever since he stumbled upon a book about Rene Magritte in an Oxford bookshop at the age of 15, singer and actor Will Young has had a passion for the surrealist artist's work. In this film, Will travels to Magritte's native Belgium to find out more about the man whose trademark was a bowler hat and whose apparently conventional exterior concealed the mind of a subversive rebel. Will uncovers a childhood marked by tragedy, a marriage that lasted from Magritte's adolescence until his death in 1967, and a stunning artistic legacy which endures to this day.
Victor Florescu is a talented, Brussels-based composer of serious music under the tutelage of respected Professor Bertier at the Music Conservatory. He is hoping to have his yet uncompleted operetta, "The Cat and the Fiddle", produced by famed impresario, Jules Daudet. Victor's focus in life changes when he meets Shirley Sheridan, a New Yorker just arrived in Brussels, she who moves into the pensione next to his own.
Having previously portrayed England's Queen Elizabeth I in 1939's The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex, Bette Davis reprises the role in the Technicolor-and-Cinescope costumer The Virgin Queen. Harry Brown and Mindret Lord's screenplay proposes that Elizabeth's relationship with adventurer Sir Walter Raleigh (Richard Todd) was somewhat more than cordial. Raleigh is depicted as a charming opportunist, who deliberate leads the Queen on in order to further his chances of heading an expedition to the New World. Complications ensue when Sir Walter falls in love with lady-in-waiting Beth Throgmorton (Joan Collins). Not to be believed for a single moment, The Virgin Queen works well on a swashbuckler level, with Davis outacting everyone in sight-even such veteran scene-stealers as Herbert Marshall, Dan O'Herlihy, and Jay "Caligula" Robinson.