13 user 5 critic

Henry VIII and His Six Wives (1972)

On his deathbed, King Henry VIII looks back over his eventful life and his six marriages.



(original screenplay)

Watch Now

With Prime Video

1 win. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Six Wives of Henry VIII (TV Mini-Series 1970)
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A six-episode dramatization of Henry VIII's relationships with each of his six wives. Each episode is devoted to one wife, and is a complete play in itself.

Stars: Keith Michell, Anthony Quayle, Patrick Troughton
Elizabeth R (TV Mini-Series 1971)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

When Elizabeth Tudor comes to the throne, her (male) advisers know she has to marry. Doesn't she? Thus starts a decades-long political/ matrimonial game, during an age of high passions and high achievement.

Stars: Glenda Jackson, Ronald Hines, Robert Hardy
Henry VIII (TV Movie 2003)
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Two-part TV series documenting the stormy 38-year reign of King Henry VIII.

Director: Pete Travis
Stars: Ray Winstone, Joss Ackland, Sid Mitchell
The Shadow of the Tower (TV Mini-Series 1972)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A series of dramas by various writers recording the key events in the reign of Henry Tudor and his founding of the Tudor Dynasty

Stars: James Maxwell, Norma West, Hugh Sullivan
Certificate: M Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Henry VIII of England discards one wife, Katharine of Aragon, who has failed to produce a male heir, in favor of the young and beautiful Anne Boleyn.

Director: Charles Jarrott
Stars: Richard Burton, Geneviève Bujold, Irene Papas
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Historical drama detailing the political and religious conflict between Scotland's Catholic Queen Mary Stuart and England's Protestant Queen Elizabeth Tudor during the 16th century.

Director: Charles Jarrott
Stars: Vanessa Redgrave, Glenda Jackson, Patrick McGoohan
The Virgin Queen (TV Mini-Series 2005)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The Virgin Queen explores the full sweep of Elizabeth's life: from her days of fear as a potential victim of her sister's terror; through her great love affair with Robert Dudley; into her ... See full summary »

Stars: Anne-Marie Duff, Sienna Guillory, Ian Hart
Certificate: GP Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Tsar Nicholas II, the inept monarch of Russia, insensitive to the needs of his people, is overthrown and exiled to Siberia with his family.

Director: Franklin J. Schaffner
Stars: Michael Jayston, Janet Suzman, Roderic Noble
Three I (1969)
Certificate: M Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Two college friends, traveling in Europe, find themselves rivals for the attentions of a mysterious woman.

Director: James Salter
Stars: Charlotte Rampling, Robie Porter, Sam Waterston
The Six Wives of Henry VIII (TV Mini-Series 2001)
Documentary | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A dramatic documentary narrated and presented by controversial historian David Starkey about the lives as wives and Queens of the six wives of Tudor king Henry VIII.

Stars: David Starkey, Caroline Lintott, David Fleeshman
Henry VIII and His Six Wives (TV Mini-Series 2016)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A series about Henry VIII and his wives, chronicling the ups and downs in his marriages and how they shaped his reign as King and ultimately the face of Britain.

Stars: Dan Jones, Suzannah Lipscomb, Toby Osmond
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Annabella marries Soranzo, when she is pregnant by her brother Giovanni. Destiny, and jealousies will expose her past, and Soranzo broods revenge. But he is not alone in that - and death will unite all.

Director: Giuseppe Patroni Griffi
Stars: Charlotte Rampling, Oliver Tobias, Fabio Testi


Cast overview, first billed only:
Frances Cuka ...
Jenny Bos ...
Bernard Hepton ...
Garfield Morgan ...
John Bryans ...
John Bennett ...


On his deathbed Tudor-king Henry VIII remembers his long reign and especially the crucial part his six marriages played in it, without producing the male heir he desired most to prevent civil wars for the succession as England suffered before his father's ascent. His first queen, Spanish princess Kathryn of Aragon, had one fatal flaw: her children died, except daughter Mary, so he pressed Rome for an annulment, and when that failed out went cardinal Wolsey as chief minister and Henry made himself head of the Church of England instead of the papacy and married Anne Boleyn. When she too failed to produce a male heir, just princess Elisabeth, he had her head roll for 'infidelity'. The third queen, gentle Jane Seymour, died giving birth to sickly prince Edward. For diplomatic reasons Henry married minor princess Anne of Cleves, whose utter lack of female charms causes another annulment and the fall of Thomas Cromwell, who recommended her. Fifth is the lovely Catherine Howard, cousin of ... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis




PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

1 February 1973 (Netherlands)  »

Also Known As:

As Seis Mulheres de Henrique Oitavo  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Lynne Fredericks portrayal of Catherine Howard was a first for many in Tudor film history. Frederick was the first actress to portray Howard in a sympathetic view, Frederick was also the first actress to play Howard who was actually close to the real Howard's age, and it was also the most historically accurate portrayal of Howard as of 2016. See more »


No women, not even Queen Catherine Parr were present at Henry's deathbed. See more »


Thomas Cromwell: Your Grace.
Henry VIII: Whom can a man trust in this world when there is nothing real in it?
[showing Cromwell a miniature portrait of Anne of Cleves]
Henry VIII: Is this a true likeness?
Thomas Cromwell: Yes, sire, I think.
Henry VIII: Where are the great pits in her face?
Thomas Cromwell: She has a queenly manner, I think, sire.
Henry VIII: I like her not!
[shoving and shaking Cromwell]
Henry VIII: She is nothing fair and I like her not!
See more »


Version of Henry VIII (1979) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Thumbnail sketch of a Tudor king
17 January 2015 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

This is a film adaptation of the six part BBC TV series. I've unfortunately never seen the series but I know it is highly regarded, much more than this film version. The reason for the inferiority of this version is obvious: the original material is very compressed.

It is naturally very difficult to compress a life so colourful, and containing so much complex political and abstruse religious manoeuvring as Henry's in a 2 hour film. Events rush by so much that it requires a good working knowledge of the life of Henry VIII to be able to follow them. For example Henry's relationship with Thomas More is barely established (it comes down to one 30 second conversation) before Thomas is executed. Later, we suddenly see rebels kneeling before Henry, for some under explained reason, who he immediately betrays (this is the Pilgrimage of Grace, when northerners rebelled against the king's abandonment of the Roman rite). Nor is the fall of Thomas Cromwell properly explored among many other lacunae. I wonder what the uninitiated would make of these things? Bewilderment I guess.

The compressed nature of the film gives rise to much obvious expositional dialogue. Henry baldly states things rather than us subtly getting to know his thoughts through his actions. This violates the basic rule of drama "show not tell".

Because of this the scenes of Henry's later life, when a lot of the political and religious turmoil had died down, come off better. There is simply less to explain to the audience and most of the famous historical people (Woolsey, More, Cromwell) were dead. So the personal drama can be explored more fully. The scenes with Katherine Howard are probably the highlight of the film, even if the actress rather over-eggs her final monologue. The scene with the king weeping is especially moving.

I'm not sure if I could recommend this to a complete novice in Tudor history, it would be too confusing. But for those studying Henry's reign of general history buffs, it is moderately interesting.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Did anybody else feel sorry for Catherine Howard? IridescentTranquility
Does anyone know where I can get a copy of this film???????? give_peace_a_chance7
Anne Boleyn beheading ra04005
Music in the film Gurn_Blanston
Catherine Howard's song sjoa_0521
Can anyone tell me, Proxy13
Discuss Henry VIII and His Six Wives (1972) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page