icon Film Profile: Henry V - (1989)
IMDb Score
Henry V (1989) on IMDb
NextFilm Score:
7.4/10 Stars
theMovieDB Score:
3.5/10 Stars
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"The great adventure of a king who defied the odds to prove himself a man."

PG

  • Director: Kenneth Branagh
  • Genre: War, Drama, History, Action, Romance
  • Studio: BBC Films
  • Subtitled | Widescreen | Duration: 140 Mins

Overview:
It's hard to recall the furore that greeted this film on its original release. Almost everyone compared first-time director Kenneth Branagh with Laurence Olivier, who made his own debut behind the camera with the same play 45 years earlier. The knives were clearly out for the pretender to Olivier's throne, yet he managed to produce a version that was as much of its time as Olivier's had been. Instead of the booming patriotism of the wartime flag-waver that was served up by Olivier, Branagh decided to focus on the savagery and futility of war. He thoroughly merited his best actor Oscar nomination: although the critics stood firmly behind Olivier's grandiloquence, Branagh gave the more subtle and rounded performance. His inclusion in the direction category, however, was more than a little flattering, as his showy use of camera and slow motion too often betrayed the naivety of the debutant. But that quibble aside, this is a solidly mounted production, with the contrasts between the finery of the court and the grime of the battlefield as striking as the excellent cast of noted thespians.
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Cast List:
Henry V : Kenneth Branagh
Chorus : Derek Jacobi
Exeter : Brian Blessed
Captain Fluellen : Ian Holm
French King : Paul Scofield
Dauphin : Michael Maloney
Ely : Alec McCowen
Katherine : Emma Thompson
Alice : Geraldine McEwan
Gloucester : Simon Shepherd
Bedford : James Larkin (1)
MacMorris : John Sessions
Boy : Christian Bale
Williams : Michael Williams
Bardolph : Richard Briers
Nym : Geoffrey Hutchings
Pistol : Robert Stephens
Sir John Falstaff : Robbie Coltrane
Mistress Quickly : Judi Dench
York : James Simmons
Westmoreland : Paul Gregory
Archbishop of Canterbury : Charles Kay
Cambridge : Fabian Cartwright
Scroop : Stephen Simms
Grey : Jay Villiers
Erpingham : Edward Jewesbury
Gower : Daniel Webb
Jamy : Jimmy Yuill
Bates : Shaun Prendergast
Court : Pat Doyle
Mountjoy : Christopher Ravenscroft

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