The Hollow Crown: Season 1, Episode 4

Henry V (21 Jul. 2012)

TV Episode  -  Drama | History
8.5
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Reviews: 5 user | 1 critic

Hal is now a responsible monarch as Henry V,his rejection of Falstaff hastening the latter's death. Told by courtiers that,through Edward III,he has a claim to the French throne he makes ... See full summary »

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Title: Henry V (21 Jul 2012)

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Louis, the Dauphin
...
...
Corporal Nym
...
Alice (as Géraldine Chaplin)
Richard Clothier ...
Earl of Salisbury
Nigel Cooke ...
Bishop of Ely
Jérémie Covillault ...
Montjoy
...
John Bates
Philippe De Brugada ...
Governor of Harfleur
Thomas Dennis ...
Young Messenger
...
Thomas Erphingham
Tom Georgeson ...
...
...
The Chorus
...
York
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Storyline

Hal is now a responsible monarch as Henry V,his rejection of Falstaff hastening the latter's death. Told by courtiers that,through Edward III,he has a claim to the French throne he makes overtures to the Dauphin but is sent a humiliating present of tennis balls. He prepares an expeditionary force to cross the Channel and take the throne,capturing the town of Harfleur during a surprise nocturnal raid following an inspirational speech. Though merciful to its inhabitants Henry allows soldier Bardolph to be hung for looting. After another truce is turned down by the Fench Henry prepares for the pitched battle of Agincourt,wandering the camp in disguise on its eve to gauge opinion of him. The battle is won with minimal English losses and the French king,whose daughter Henry marries,declares him to be his successor. However an end title shows that Henry dies of dysentary at the age of thirty-five and we are told that his son Henry VI loses possession of France. Written by don @ minifie-1

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Drama | History

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21 July 2012 (UK)  »

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16:9 HD
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Follows The Hollow Crown: Henry IV, Part 2 (2012) See more »

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User Reviews

The Plantagenet Supremacy - superb climax to an excellent series of productions
23 July 2012 | by (Rural Kent, UK) – See all my reviews

Well, you have to see this.

Even if you don't watch the three prequels, The Plantagenet Identity, The Plantagenet Legacy and the Plantagenet Ascendancy (RII, HiVi & HIVii).

It's classic Shakespearean filmmaking with a superb cast, mostly excellent direction, great cinematography and an absolutely outstanding central performance from Hiddlestone, which finally stepped out of the shadows of those of his famous predecessors as the play reached its climax. And there are other actors turning in their film-career best here too, Anton Lesser and Melanie Thierry for example.

All in all, the best Shakespeare the BBC has ever done. Hiddlestone may take the laurels for his three performances as Hal, the not-so-callow, not-so-innocent teenage chrysalis who turns into a malevolent Machiavellian butterfly but Whishaw's utterly brilliant Richard II is a very good reason to start the cycle from the beginning, as intended.

The quartet of plays builds on the Shakespearean tradition of adapting for cinema while retaining as much as possible of Shakespeare's imaginative manifesto as we have it in the play's Prologue, demanding imaginative effort of the part of the viewer rather than supplying every conceivable horse and nail.

The drama is built with a theatrical approach to casting and mise-en-scene, resisting (mostly) the temptation to colour the action with simulated CGI reality. Shot entirely in the UK, the outdoor locations are always beautifully chosen but never needlessly populated with thousands of digital soldiers. There are CGI glimpses of mediaeval England and French armies here and there but they never dominate the theatrical requirement to distinguish drama from scene-setting. Olivier's version started in the theatre and then cut away, wider and wider until the famous charge and the immense Agincourt scenes. Here, the camera stays focused on the main players throughout and even the famous 'band of brothers' speech, though spoken on an outdoor battlefield, manages to retain a theatrical intimacy.

Hats off to the BBC who, whatever I or anyone else says about them, can still deliver when it matters.


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