IMDb > Henry V (1989)
Henry V
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Henry V (1989) More at IMDbPro »


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Up 11% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
William Shakespeare (by)
Kenneth Branagh (adapted for the screen by)
View company contact information for Henry V on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
8 November 1989 (USA) See more »
The great adventure of a king who defied the odds to prove himself a man.
The gritty adaption of William Shakespeare's play about the English King's bloody conquest of France. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Won Oscar. Another 10 wins & 12 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Mastepiece See more (108 total) »


  (in credits order)

Derek Jacobi ... Chorus

Kenneth Branagh ... King Henry V

Simon Shepherd ... Duke Humphrey of Gloucester

James Larkin ... Duke John of Bedford

Brian Blessed ... Duke Thomas Beaufort of Exeter

James Simmons ... Duke Edward of York

Paul Gregory ... Westmoreland
Charles Kay ... Archbishop of Canterbury

Alec McCowen ... Bishop of Ely
Fabian Cartwright ... Earl Richard of Cambridge
Stephen Simms ... Lord Henry Scroop
Jay Villiers ... Sir Thomas Grey
Edward Jewesbury ... Sir Thomas Erpingham

Ian Holm ... Captain Fluellen

Danny Webb ... Gower (as Daniel Webb)
Jimmy Yuill ... Jamy

John Sessions ... Macmorris

Shaun Prendergast ... Bates

Patrick Doyle ... Court (as Pat Doyle)
Michael Williams ... Williams

Richard Briers ... Lieutenant Bardolph
Geoffrey Hutchings ... Corporal Nym

Robert Stephens ... Auncient Pistol

Robbie Coltrane ... Sir John Falstaff

Christian Bale ... Robin the Luggage-Boy

Geraldine McEwan ... Alice

Judi Dench ... Mistress Nell Quickly

Paul Scofield ... King Charles VI of France

Michael Maloney ... Louis the Dauphin
Harold Innocent ... Duke Philippe of Burgundy

Richard Clifford ... Duke Charles of Orleans
Colin Hurley ... Grandpré
Richard Easton ... Constable Charles Delabreth
Christopher Ravenscroft ... Montjoy

Emma Thompson ... Princess Katherine de Valois
David Lloyd Meredith ... Governor of Harfleur

David Parfitt ... Messenger
Nicholas Ferguson ... Earl Richard Beauchamp of Warwick
Tom Whitehouse ... Sir John Talbot
Nigel Greaves ... Duke Jean of Berri
Julian Gartside ... Duke Jean of Bretagne
Mark Inman ... 1st Soldier
Chris Armstrong ... 2nd Soldier
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Callum Yuill ... Child (as Calum Yuill)

Kenneth W Caravan ... English Soldier (uncredited)

David Speed ... Soldier (uncredited)
Fred Wood ... Soldier (Hooded with Staff) (uncredited)

Directed by
Kenneth Branagh 
Writing credits
William Shakespeare (by)

Kenneth Branagh (adapted for the screen by)

Produced by
Stephen Evans .... executive producer
David Parfitt .... associate producer
Bruce Sharman .... producer
Original Music by
Patrick Doyle 
Cinematography by
Kenneth MacMillan (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Michael Bradsell 
Casting by
Debbie McWilliams 
Production Design by
Tim Harvey 
Art Direction by
Martin Childs 
Norman Dorme (supervising art director)
John King 
Costume Design by
Phyllis Dalton 
Makeup Department
Ronnie Cogan .... assistant hairdresser
Peter Frampton .... makeup supervisor
Stephanie Kaye .... assistant hairdresser
Beryl Lerman .... makeup artist
Ken Lintott .... makeup artist
Sue Love .... hairdresser
Production Management
Vincent Winter .... production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Vic Armstrong .... second unit director
Ian Hickinbotham .... second assistant director
Adam Somner .... third assistant director
Michael Stevenson .... second assistant director
David Tringham .... assistant director
Art Department
Alan Bailey .... prop man
Celia Bobak .... buyer
Alan Brooks .... supervising carpenter
Don Clayson .... supervising plasterer
Derek Creedon .... prop store keeper
Peter Dorme .... art department assistant
Kavin Hall .... supervising painter
Gary Handley .... drapes master
Ron Higgins .... chargehand dressing prop man
Steven Lawrence .... junior draughtsman
Richard Lyon .... construction storeman
Jim Morahan .... draughtsman
Allan Moss .... modeller
Wesley Peppiatt .... stand-by chargehand prop man
Michael Redding .... construction coordinator
Graham Stickley .... prop man
Graham Sumner .... property master
Peter Wallace .... supervising rigger
Gary Wiffen .... stand-by prop man
Kenny Wilson .... supervising stagehand (as Ken Wilson)
Sound Department
Campbell Askew .... dubbing editor
David Crozier .... sound mixer
Robert Gavin .... assistant dialogue editor
Dominic Lester .... assistant dubbing mixer
Gerard McCann .... assistant dubbing editor
Robin O'Donoghue .... dubbing mixer
John Poyner .... dialogue editor
Andrew Sissons .... boom operator
Tim Worth .... sound maintenance
Special Effects by
Paul Clancy .... assistant special effects technician
Terry Glass .... senior effects technician
Darrell Guyon .... special effects technician
Matthew Harlow .... special effects trainee
David Watson .... senior effects technician
Ian Wingrove .... special effects supervisor
Trevor Wood .... senior effects technician
Visual Effects by
Simon Dowling .... main title designer (uncredited)
Vic Armstrong .... stunt coordinator
Robert Patton .... stunt player
Dickey Beer .... stunts (uncredited)
Ken Buckle .... stunts (uncredited)
Nick Gillard .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Sophie Baker .... still photographer
Tom Brown .... best boy
Peter Butler .... camera grip
Trevor Coop .... camera operator
John Deaton .... focus puller
Simon Finney .... clapper loader
Adam Lee .... camera trainee
Steve Mcleod .... gaffer
Malcolm Vinson .... camera operator
John Deaton .... first assistant camera (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
John Birkinshaw .... costume assistant
Jane Clive .... costume assistant
Susan Coates .... costume assistant
Amelia Davies .... wardrobe mistress
Stephen Miles .... assistant costume designer
Don Mothersill .... costume assistant
Richard Pointing .... costume supervisor
Vernon White .... costume assistant
Editorial Department
Kevin Ahern .... assistant editor
Michael Parfitt .... editor trainee
Bob Wenokur .... studio post-production representative (uncredited)
Music Department
Lawrence Ashmore .... orchestrator
City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra .... music performed by
Chris Dibble .... music recording engineer (as Christopher Dibble)
Paul Golding .... assistant music scoring engineer
Stephen Hill .... chorus master: The Stephen Hill Singers
Simon Rattle .... conductor: City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
The Stephen Hill Singers .... choir
Graham Sutton .... music editor
Peter Thomas .... orchestra leader: The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchstra
Transportation Department
Barry Chintrens .... unit driver
John Hollywood .... unit driver
Terry Pritchard .... driver: Kenneth Branagh
Terry Pritchard .... unit driver
Other crew
David Allistone .... machinist
Bi Benton .... production coordinator
Michael Buckley .... assistant executive of orchestra: The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
Hugh Cruttwell .... technical advisor
Sheala Daniell .... assistant accountant
Marilyn Eardley .... assistant to director
Tim Haslam .... worldwide sales
Christine Hathway .... publicity assistant
Lil Heyman .... unit runner
Sally Hoskins .... unit runner
Russell Jackson .... technical advisor
Annie Penn .... script supervisor (as Annie Wotton)
Ron Phipps .... production accountant
Iona Price .... assistant to producer
Al Senter .... publicity writer
Edward Smith .... chief executive of orchestra: The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
Peter Thompson .... press representative
Li Chin Tye .... unit nurse
Andrew A Wilkinson .... sword master
Betty Williams .... assistant accountant
Anya Noakes .... release publicist (uncredited)
Penny Brownjohn .... special thanks
Harry Fuller .... special thanks
Gay Hamilton .... special thanks
Eddie Healey .... special thanks
Janet Jefferies .... special thanks
John McMichael .... special thanks
Dearbhla Molloy .... special thanks
Abigail Reynolds .... special thanks
Ethna Roddy .... special thanks
Jane Snowden .... special thanks
Sophie Thompson .... special thanks
Shaun Webb .... special thanks
David Wickins .... special thanks
Nicola Wright .... special thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated PG-13 for a bloody battle
137 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

One of the late Marlon Brando's favorite films.See more »
Revealing mistakes: When the army crosses the river, rain is clearly falling into the water in the foreground but not in the background, which is glassy smooth.See more »
[first lines]
Chorus:O! for a Muse of fire, that would ascend The brightest heaven of invention; A kingdom for a stage, princes to act and monarchs to behold the swelling scene. Then should the war-like Harry, like himself, assume the port of Mars; and at his heels, Leash'd in like hounds, should famine, sword, and fire crouch for employment.
See more »


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54 out of 60 people found the following review useful.
Mastepiece, 7 July 2005
Author: TemporaryOne-1 from Orlando, Florida, USA

This film is a chef d'oeuvre, masterpiece, magnum opus, perfection. The battle scenes are exquisite, the soundtrack is spectacular. Mud & blood, sweat & tears, man & horse, all become one powerful force on the field of Agincourt.

Branagh, and the people he surrounds himself with, breathe life into Shakespeare's words.

When you watch Branagh, as Henry, deliver the Feast Of St. Crispian's Day speech to his weary band of brothers, you will be swept up in his passion, and find yourself cheering "let us fight" at your TV screen.

Branagh speaks the language of Shakespeare fluidly, naturally. It is the greatest language he knows, and upon entering his world, you too will know the glory of Shakespeare.

Non nobis domine, domine Non nobis domine Sed nomini, sed nomini Tu lauda gloriam

"O for a Muse of fire, that would ascend The brightest heaven of invention! A kingdom for a stage, princes to act, And monarchs to behold the swelling scene!"

"And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by, From this day to the ending of the world, But we in it shall be remember'd; We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; For he to-day that sheds his blood with me Shall be my brother"

I love Branagh's Henry V because he incorporated all of Henry V's traits - the roguishly witty Prince Hal, the warmonger, the imperialist, the opportunist, the master rhetorician, the man with a miraculous ability to reason in divinity and to debate in commonwealth affairs and to exhibit military prowess, his piety, his administrative sagacity, political cunning, arrogance, his cruelty, his affability, all in all Branagh masterfully wears all the masks of Prince Hal/Henry V that Shakespeare created.

I love Branagh's version because he recreated as much as he could of the play and transformed it into an artistic cinematic presentation (the set designs and that battle sequence at Agincourt and the rich deep hues of burgundy and brown and sumptuous plums) instead of a staged presentation, because he remained true to Shakespeare's ambivalence towards Henry by allowing viewers to be critical of Henry's choices, he preserved most of the dialogue and presented the scenes in order, because of Branagh's unparalleled recitation of Shakespearean dialogue, and because of Patrick Doyle's rapturous, Proustian music which transports listeners to a paradoxical state of paradisial elysium and infernal, torturous pain, evoking times and places and battles and lives long forgotten, a remembrance of things past, a memories forever faded into royal genealogical charts and myths and legends.

The play is theatrically limited because the events in the play cannot be adequately represented on stage, which is one reason why Henry V is ironically one of the most theatrically expressive plays to perform - the production crew is forced to transcend theatrical convention in order to faithfully represent the play.

Theatre depends on synecdoche, meaning that what is presented on stage only represents part of the whole, and this is because of theatrical restrictions. What we watch is a shadow or illusion of the whole.

In Henry V, Shakespeare expected the audience to actively participate in the re-enactment of the events being staged.

Shakespeare addresses this throughout the Prologue and Chorus of the play, by constantly apologizing about the inadequate, confining medium being used to portray the spectacle before us.

Henry V is the crowning achievement of his Henriad (which spans from Richard II to Richard III) and of the English history play in general, and it is grandiosely resplendent with thousands of men and horses, full-rigged ships, the English fleet leaving Southampton and traversing the English Channel, and the brutal sacking of an entire town whose sacking is explicitly described in the dialogue - the firing of cannons, scaling ladders, town walls that must be physically breached on stage, characters that appear on the walls looking down at the siege, the town reduced to rubble, and the King boaring through the town with a massive army to make an extravagantly celebratory and unchallenged exit through the gates (is there any room on state for a set of gates?) of Harfleur.

Thank you Branagh for enriching our imaginations.

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