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Genres are ComedyCrimeDr Produced in 2005, UK
Available Quality: DivX, DVD, iPod
Rating: 7 out of 10 (9813 votes)
|Christopher Guest||Rosalind Halstead||Judi Dench||Bob Hoskins|
|Kelly Reilly||Natalia Tena||Will Young|
Recently widowed well-to-do Laura Henderson is at a bit of a loose end in inter-war London. On a whim she buys the derelict Windmill theatre in the West End and persuades impresario Vivian Van Damm to run it, despite the fact the two dont seem to get on at all. Although their idea of a non-stop revue is at first a success, other theatres copy it and disaster looms. Laura suggests they put nudes in the show, but Van Damm points out that the Lord Chamberlain, who licenses live shows in Britain, is likely to have something to say about this. Luckily Mrs Henderson is friends with him.
22 May 2013
21 May 2013
Gently amusing British wartime film with superb music
I cannot believe how badly this lovely film has been savaged on IMDb.Apart from spectacular vaudeville staging, Judi Dench plays hereccentric, mischievous widow to perfection and the excellent BobHoskins is cast surprisingly out of type as a reserved, rather complex,gentlemanly but iron-willed theatre manager. Their argumentativerelationship is amusing without being overbearing, as the film isessentially a nicely balanced ensemble piece. Dench's character LauraHenderson turns out to have a very touching motivation for her desireto stage daring musicals for brave young men off to war. Will Younggives an astonishingly strong vocal performance throughout. Hismannered vocal style is perfect, and he looks every inch the part onstage. His few brief moments of acting are nothing to blush overeither. Kelly Reilly, the star of the naked girlie reviews, is quitesimply mesmerising to watch, and ultimately her character is full ofpathos.And if none of that were enough to engage you, you've got aninteresting wartime plot, based on true events in the history of theWindmill Theatre, which in current circumstances feels highly topicaland relevant for Londoners. 9/10
21 May 2013
The film has its greatest spark when Hopkins and Dench are on screen together and those moments are far too rare in its second half.
20 May 2013
In this historical recreation, a wealthy widow opens England's firsttheater to feature nude performers. Dench is wonderful as the eccentricwidow who hires a temperamental manager (Hoskins) to run the theaterbut constantly clashes with him. In fact, the friction between the twofeels somewhat contrived and overdone. The early parts of the film workbest, marked by humor and playfulness, including a funny scene whereDench tries to make a case for the bare market to a conservativegovernment official (Guest). Then comes World War II and the mooddarkens, causing the middle of the film to drag a bit. The film isRated R for scenes of horror (war violence and Hoskins naked).
17 May 2013
Nothing like the real story.
What is wrong with the film industry? Here we have an opportunity toshow what the Windmill theatre was really like and what it was like towork there and what the shows were like. What we got was the usualangst ridden plot with the usual "Love interest" sub plot going onetc.etc. I wonder if directors have books with skeleton plots and theyjust fill in the character names as most films are so much of the same.Back in the 1960s I stood outside the (recently closed) Windmilltheatre and read the huge list of famous comics and performers who hadstarted there. Everybody from Harry Seacome to Jimmy Edwards startedout at the Windmill but absolutely none of this history was mentionedin this film. Also, in reality the naked girls were absolutelyforbidden to move so what used to happen was that the curtain would goup and the girls were stood stock still and then the curtain came downagain and the comic or another act came on.The acting was so "amateur dramatic" that I felt like I was watching anepisode of a TV soap. We need films with new actors who are not gettingpaid a fortune but who can actually act.If you want to know what the Windmill was really like get hold of acopy of "Murder at the Windmill" and you can see a (slightlysanitised,) complete show.2/10
16 May 2013
What a hoot!
I went to this film with no particular expectations because I had read relatively little about it in advance. Consequently, when it grabbed me from the very opening frames and completely entertained me through the closing credits, I was very surprised.This is one of those movies that actors like Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins were made for. They both have such depth to their abilities that they make it look like they can do stuff like this without working at it. Their performances in this film were everything we have come to expect from them.What seemed important about this wonderful story, is that it portrays two strong-willed adults whose relationship is frequently combative but who, in the final scenes, own up to the fact that they are utterly devoted to one another. Love and friendship come in many forms and it is refreshing to watch a film that recognizes some of them that are at the edges of our awareness.I love films that meld the entertainment value of a good story with astute observations of the human condition. The feel of this film, in spite of having some more serious issues with which it deals, reminded me a little of the hilarious "Being Julia" and the equally delightful "Topsy Turvy" of a couple years back. If you liked these costume period pieces that were full of wit and over the top delivery from first class actors, you will like "Mrs. Henderson Presents" as well.
16 May 2013
Mrs. Henderson Presents is not great cinema, and neither was the Windmill great theater, but they both put on a good show.
16 May 2013
Me, I prefer my candy bittersweet. But purring Dench and sparring Hoskins are agreeable company.
14 May 2013
One of the most delightful movies Ive seen in a very long time.
I've just returned from seeing Mrs. Henderson Presents, and I'm stillfloating. Any viewer with a love for England during her "finest hour"will not be able to resist this charming and superbly acted film. It isthe story of a rich widow who decides to devote her ample fortune andfree time to opening a West End theater, the managing director who runsit for her, and their cast and crew during the years 1937 to 1943.Both Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins -- both of whom I would watch doinganything at all, including reading the phone book -- are at the top oftheir form. The camera adores them, and their on-screen chemistry istruly dazzling...I haven't seen such a great screen duet in many years.Here's hoping that they work together again, since intelligent movieswith appealing, experienced actors who excel at their craft are mightyhard to come by, nowadays.The production values are as excellent as the performances. As usualwith British historical films and TV productions, the people on thescreen are the real thing...men and women in and of the late 30s andearly 40s, and not 21st century people playing "pretend," dressed up inperiod clothes and makeup. Even the nude girls look like nude girlsfrom the 1940s, their bodies proportioned differently from today's moremuscular physiques. And the inclusion in the film of actual footagefrom the war years further enhances the sense of place and time.This is the kind of movie that is seldom made today: sharp, witty,well-paced, funny and sad, and very human in scale. All praises toeveryone involved in its creation. See it, and have a wonderful time.
14 May 2013
A lively period piece elevated by a winning pair of leads.
13 May 2013
... the picture is as tastefully pretty as its girls, and just as motionless.
12 May 2013
This review is from: Mrs. Henderson Presents (Widescreen Edition) (DVD) Good movie. A bit of history done in a really fun way.
04 May 2013
JUDI AT HER BEST
This review is from: Mrs. Henderson Presents (Widescreen Edition) (DVD) This was even better than "Behaving Badly" and I am going on a Judi Dench shopping spree! I already have "Ladies in Lavender" but haven't viewed it yet. I'm so glad I purchased all three of them and will definitely purchase more.
03 May 2013
An exceptional little film
I seem to be on a Judi Dench role this week, first having seen Ladiesin Lavender and now Mrs. Henderson Presents. Such a lovely actress. BobHoskins is another favorite having played a wonderful part in theDunera Boys, a lesser known but excellent movie. They were so wellmatched in this movie and all the other parts were played with equalprofessionalism. I really cannot fine any flaws in the film. I am a bigfan of musicals so that might have helped and might put some peopleoff, but the numbers were well staged. Enough wry wit, drama andstoryline for most people. This is what I would term, a small film. Noblood and guts, no massive video effects but rather old war footage, nomassive attack scenes. Just a story about life during WW2 on the WestEnd of London.
02 May 2013
3.5 to be honest, but Ill round up.
Laura Henderson (Judi Dench) was a member of England's upper-most socio-economic faction. She and her husband traveled in the most elite circles. They had business throughout the English Empire and were privileged in all corners. Unfortunately, when her husband dies, Laura is left without not just the love of her life, but also the man who kept her schedule. She is forced to occupy her time some other way. She is schooled in the art of widowhood by a friend (who was played very well by Thelma Barlow). Mrs. Henderson is instructed that being a widow is not that bad, for example she has no one around to stop her from buying things. The advice, though in reference to jewelry, was applied when Mrs. Henderson bought the Windmill Theatre. She knows nothing of running a theatre and even less about producing a review. To help her with her project, Mrs. Henderson hired Vivian Van Damm (Bob Hoskins). Together they revolutionize the theatre experience in England, offering things that have never been available before, up to and including nude girls. The story is based on actual events. It was certainly an interesting piece of history to recount, and it was done well. I may have been a little too young to fully appreciate the humor and the charm, but I still liked the movie a good deal. Judi Dench's body of work will be celebrated well into the future. Her career is an impressive one, and really speaks for itself. Her role as Laura Henderson is another notch in her belt of which she should be extremely proud. If my saying so is not enough, it did earn her an Academy Award nomination. It is hard to overshadow a Judi Dench performance, but apparently if anyone is capable it is Bob Hoskins. I may be so bold as to actually think he did a better job than she. He has been nominated for many awards, but I have seen very few of those pictures. I figured he would always be Eddie Valiant to me, the character he played in Who Framed Roger Rabbit? The movie is not well suited for a younger audience as there is nudity, though it is tastefully done. But I guess that is just a word we just to justify seeing naked people. The writing was funny and the songs were very good. I will warn you, some are not so easy to get out of your head.
02 May 2013
A Good Effort!
I thought it was a very good effort. The film was just good. Judi Denchwas superb however, she put in amazing talent to her role. She was veryfunny at times with her one liners which were classic and other timesshe was highly dramatic giving good performances. However Judi's goodacting was one of the only highlights of the movie. Thelma Barlow(Coronation Street star Mavis Riley/Wilton) was also good. Deliveringlines to a high entertainment value. She too was extremely funny andwas purely their as a supporting character. She was very good. Judi andThelma excelled in this film. Another good point was the scenery. TheLondon streets, the theatre, The theatre rooftop and a lake. AlsoFrance which featured was also good. The film was based on true eventsand therefore was also very pleasing. However, the bad points mustcome. Will Young cannot act and nor could a few others. The film got arather bit too tedious in parts as lots of dancing and music was shownand the production of the shows at the theatre which got quite boringand was overly played out. Overall I think fair play to the cast for agood effort and a well done to Thelma Barlow and Judi Dench as theyreally did act and were outstanding, just a little let down by thesickening, dreadful and frankly appalling Will Young, who should stickto singing not acting. Parts of the film were dramatic and parts werecomical and both were done well. A good effort, I reward 7 points.
29 April 2013
Director Stephen Frears usually excels at jumping genres, but fails to do so within a single film.
28 April 2013
CLEVER AND WITTY
The opening credits have the appearance of a 1960's comedy. While this movie is clever and witty, I would place it into a drama catagory that uses humor to prevent dry boring material. The movie has nudity, but it is not erotic. In a compromise solution, nudity is allowed only if the girls never move while on stage, i.e. act as statues.
24 April 2013
Mrs. Henderson Presents
This review is from: Mrs. Henderson Presents (Widescreen Edition) (DVD) Hard to beat a movie with Judi Dench. The movie was great. Made greater still because it was based on a true story.
24 April 2013
ingredients dont hang together
Yet another disappointing picture from wildly erratic director StephenFrears. How the director of " Dangerous Liaisons" and "Prick up yourEars' manages to let down potentially good material like this is amystery. Poor Judi Dench battles valiantly with a nothing script and aweirdly unsettling "crush" on Bob Hoskins but it is not to be.Hischaracter introduces some poor actress as his " wife" to the supposedlyattracted to him Dench only to have her disappear into an unexplainedvacuum, never to be seen again or heard from in the entire story. Thepoor lady doesn't even get to say a line of dialogue even though herappearance is enough to unruffle the unruffable Dench.! This is simplynot good enough, Mr Frears, get a life!. A marvellously accurateperformance from the talented Christopher Guest as the Lord Chamberlainis barely a reason to watch it, and the "moralizing" that goes on inthe name of showing naked breasts to love hungry British soldiersduring WW2 sits most uncomfortably, making one squirm. One gets thefeeling that in the end Frears decided that he had to finish thepicture no matter what and rushed it.Oh, the cars were marvellous as were Dame Dench's outs.