Henry V (1989 film)

name = Henry V

caption = Theatrical release poster
imdb_id = 0097499
writer = Kenneth Branagh
William Shakespeare (play)
starring = Kenneth Branagh
Derek Jacobi
Brian Blessed
Paul Scofield
Emma Thompson
Michael Maloney
Richard Briers
Robbie Coltrane
Judi Dench
Ian Holm
Robert Stephens
Christian Bale
Geraldine McEwan
director = Kenneth Branagh
producer = Bruce Sharman
editing = Michael Bradsell
distributor =
released = November 8, 1989
runtime = 137 min
country = United Kingdom
language = English
budget =

"Henry V" is a 1989 film directed by Kenneth Branagh, and based upon the Shakespeare play about the famous English King. Branagh stars in the title role with Derek Jacobi as the Chorus (a narrator). Brian Blessed, Ian Holm, Christian Bale, Paul Scofield, Jimmy Yuill and Emma Thompson are among the other stars, whilst Robbie Coltrane and Judi Dench have the cameo roles of Falstaff and Mistress Quickly, both of them major characters in other Shakespearean plays. Another minor character, "Michael Williams", is played by the actor Michael Williams, Judi Dench's husband in real life.

The film was produced by Bruce Sharman with the British Broadcasting Corporation and Renaissance Films. Whereas the 1940s film used the Elizabethan Globe theatre as a setting in which to introduce the action, the 1989 version used a film set as the background to Chorus's opening speech. The visual and verbal styles of the film are much grittier than the Laurence Olivier film ("see": Henry V), particularly with respect to the Battle of Agincourt scenes, which are strongly reminiscent of the battle scenes in the films of Akira Kurosawa, or the Battle of Shrewsbury in Orson Welles's "Chimes At Midnight". The film's budget was $9 million.

One of the most surprising roles was that of Mountjoy, the French herald. Although he appears only in a few short scenes (and always wears the same royal-blue garment), he is given several memorable lines. Mountjoy was also named in Olivier's 1944 film and the 1979 BBC television version.


"Henry V" received near-universal critical acclaim for Branagh's Oscar-nominated performance and direction, for the accessibility of its Shakespearean language and particularly for its music by first-time composer Patrick Doyle, which was performed by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Simon Rattle.

The film grossed $10 million in the U.S. and at the time of its widest release played on 134 U.S. screens. Phyllis Dalton won the Academy Award for Best Costume Design and the film was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role (Branagh) and Best Director (Branagh).

Full Cast

* Chorus - Derek Jacobi
* Henry V - Kenneth Branagh
* Gloucester - Simon Shepherd
* Bedford - James Larkin
* Exeter - Brian Blessed
* Westmoreland - Paul Gregory
* Canterbury - Charles Kay
* Ely - Alec McCowen
* Cambridge - Fabian Cartwright
* Scroop - Stephen Simms
* Grey - Jay Villiers
* Erpingham - Edward Jewesbury
* Fluellen - Ian Holm
* Gower - Daniel Webb
* Jamy - Jimmy Yuill
* Macmorris - John Sessions
* Bates - Shaun Prendergast
* Court - Pat Doyle
* Williams - Michael Williams
* Bardolph - Richard Briers
* Nym - Geoffrey Hutchings
* Pistol - Robert Stephens
* Falstaff - Robbie Coltrane
* Boy - Christian Bale
* Mistress Quickly - Judi Dench
* Charles VI of France - Paul Scofield
* Dauphin - Michael Maloney
* Burgundy - Harold Innocent
* Orleans - Richard Clifford
* Grandpre - Colin Hurley
* Constable - Richard Easton
* Mountjoy - Christopher Ravenscroft
* Katherine - Emma Thompson
* Alice - Geraldine McEwan
* Governor of Harfleur - David Lloyd Meredith
* Messenger - David Parfitt
* Warwick - Nicholas Ferguson
* Talbot - Tom Whitehouse
* Berri - Nigel Greaves
* Bretagne - Julian Gartside
* 1st Soldier - Mark Inman
* 2nd Soldier - Chris Armstrong
* Child - Calum Yuill

External links

*imdb title | id=0097499 | title=Henry V
* [http://www.bardolatry.com/reviews/henryvonfilm.html/ "Henry V" on Film ]

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