The Lion in Winter (2003)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama, History, Romance  |  23 May 2004 (USA)
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King Henry II (Patrick Stewart) keeps his wife, Eleanor (Glenn Close) locked away in the towers because of her frequent attempts to overthrow him. With Eleanor out of the way he can have ... See full summary »


(as Andrei Konchalovsky)


(play), (teleplay)
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Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 6 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »



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King Henry II (Patrick Stewart) keeps his wife, Eleanor (Glenn Close) locked away in the towers because of her frequent attempts to overthrow him. With Eleanor out of the way he can have his dalliances with his young mistress (Yuliya Vysotskaya). Needless to say the queen is not pleased, although she still has affection for the king. Working through her sons, she plots the king's demise and the rise of her second and preferred son, Richard (Andrew Howard), to the throne. The youngest son, John (Rafe Spall), an overweight buffoon and the only son holding his father's affection is the king's choice after the death of his first son, young Henry. But John is also overly eager for power and is willing to plot his father's demise with middle brother, Geoffrey (John Light) and the young king of France, Phillip (Jonathan Rhys Meyers). Geoffrey, of course sees his younger brother's weakness and sees that route as his path to power. Obviously political and court intrigue ensues. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


All of Britain and half of France were his kingdom. But there was one thing Henry II would never control . . . His Family. (DVD) See more »


Drama | History | Romance | War


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Release Date:

23 May 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

O Leão no Inverno  »

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Did You Know?


Patrick Stewart also played Henry's son, Richard the Lionheart, in Robin Hood: Men in Tights (1993). See more »


When Henry has locked up this three sons in the cellar, he says that they are locked up together with the Port (wine). However, the term Port has only been in use since the 17th century. See more »


John: He has a knife, a knife!
Eleanor of Aquitaine: Of course he has a knife! I have a knife. We all have knives. It's 1183 and we're all barbarians!
See more »


Featured in The 62nd Annual Golden Globe Awards (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent human view of history.
28 May 2005 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Remakes of successful films are notoriously difficult. It took courage to challenge the Peter O'Toole, Katherine Hepburn film. It also took talent. Patrick Stewart and Glenn Close have that in abundance. The original is a classic, no doubt, but Stewart and Close made Henry II and Eleanor very real. In a larger sense, it's too easy to see distant history and the people who lived it as characters in a play, but this film made it clear that the people who lived in those distant time were like us; they dreamed, schemed, hoped, planned, laughed, hurt, made stupid decisions and wept. Henry and Eleanor might have had larger forces working on them than most of us do, but they were just people. Stewart and Close made them real. The Supporting cast was superb. I especially appreciated the portrayal of Richard. Our modern view of that strange tormented man and terrible king was well rendered by Andrew Howard. I would recommend this film over the original.

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