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The Winslow Boy (1999)

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Following the theft of a postal-order, a fourteen-year old cadet is expelled from Naval College. To save the honour of the boy and his family, the pre-eminent barrister of the day is engaged to take on the might the Admiralty.

Director:

David Mamet

Writers:

Terence Rattigan (play), David Mamet (screenplay)
5 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Matthew Pidgeon Matthew Pidgeon ... Dickie Winslow
Rebecca Pidgeon ... Catherine Winslow
Gemma Jones ... Grace Winslow
Nigel Hawthorne ... Arthur Winslow
Lana Bilzerian Lana Bilzerian ... Undermaid
Sarah Flind ... Violet
Aden Gillett ... John Watherstone
Guy Edwards ... Ronnie Winslow
Colin Stinton ... Desmond Curry
Eve Bland Eve Bland ... Suffragette
Sara Stewart ... Miss Barnes, Beacon Reporter
Perry Fenwick Perry Fenwick ... Fred
Alan Polonsky Alan Polonsky ... Mr. Michaels
Jeremy Northam ... Sir Robert Morton
Neil North ... First Lord
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Storyline

Early 20th century England: while toasting his daughter Catherine's engagement, Arthur Winslow learns the royal naval academy expelled his 14-year-old son, Ronnie, for stealing five shillings. Father asks son if it is true; when the lad denies it, Arthur risks fortune, health, domestic peace, and Catherine's prospects to pursue justice. After defeat in the military court of appeals, Arthur and Catherine go to Sir Robert Morton, a brilliant, cool barrister and M.P., who examines Ronnie and suggests that they take the matter before Parliament to seek permission to sue the Crown. They do, which keeps Ronnie's story on the front page and keeps Catherine in Sir Robert's ken. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Sony Pictures Classics

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 October 1999 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

El honor de los Winslow See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$80,553, 2 May 1999, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,956,112, 31 October 1999
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Winslow Partners Ltd. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Neil North, who played the First Lord of the Admiralty in this adaptation, played Ronnie Winslow in the first adaptation, The Winslow Boy (1948). See more »

Goofs

When Ronnie Winslow tears open the envelope and is about to remove the letter, the stamp and address are facing him, then in the reverse shot as he removes the letter the stamp and address are facing away from him. See more »

Quotes

Sir Robert Morton: I wept today because right had been done.
Catherine Winslow: Not justice?
Sir Robert Morton: No, not justice. Right. Easy to do justice. Very hard to do right.
See more »

Connections

Version of Pojken Winslow (1959) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
What an enjoyable experience! A satisfying film indeed -- down to the very last word spoken.
12 June 1999 | by ruby_fffSee all my reviews

A MUST SEE for Mamet fans and anyone who appreciates performances by Nigel Hawthorne, Jeremy Northam and Rebecca Pidgeon -- a pinnacle tour de force! It's costume drama, if you fancy PBS Masterpiece Theater productions, you'll definitely enjoy it.

Simply Perfect. It's perfection to a "tea" (high tea at four). It's so comfortable and relaxing to watch a Mamet film even when it's a story of intrigue and suspense.

Without stress of anticipation or worrying how the film might turn out, I entered the theater already satisfied -- I am seeing a Mamet film (a relieve from the Hollywood blockbusters!) I totally trusted the writer/director, serenely sat there knowing I will have a pleasant film experience, and immensely enjoyable it truly was!

Every character is well acted by a perfect cast! Nigel Hawthorne as the senior Winslow, Arthur, head of the family. Gemma Jones as the matron of the house, Mrs. Winslow, Grace. Rebecca Pidgeon (Catherine "Kate" Winslow the daughter who works for her cause in women suffrage) flawlessly matches Jeremy Northam (Sir Robert Morton the renowned lawyer who has his influence on the House of Commons). What a fine pair opposite each other. Northam is impeccable and as handsome as he is. Pidgeon is no less brilliant and shines reflectively. There are the other two sons in the Winslow family: the key role of the Winslow boy in question, Ronnie, played by Guy Edwards, and the older son Dickie played by Rebecca's brother Matthew Pidgeon. Also Sarah Flind as the twenty-four years faithful family servant Violet, Colin Stinton as cousin Desmond and Aden Gillett as fiancé John (the two men who keenly pursue Kate) just about do the job for this faultlessly put together story on film.

Mamet's screenplay once again superbly presented. Every line, every word in every scene came across so befitting for the moment -- such timing and delivery. This is a politically conscious film: subjects include family unit value, honor and honesty, class structure, influence of a well-known lawyer, along with father and son relationship, father and daughter, husband and wife, and romantic notions being tossed about around Kate -- all integrally paced yet seemingly choreographed together so effortlessly.

Mind you the case is not the only central interest, the tension (and subtle tender friendship) between Kate Winslow and Sir Robert Morton is fascinating to watch, as they grow to observe each other closely and exchange banters. Kate, with her seemingly restrained manners, is holding back her feelings, while Sir Robert is opening up steadily and showing (obvious to us viewers) interest in getting to talk to Kate more often than he would a man of his stature.

For me, there are four key scenes of exceptional energy, be it in high or low-key delivery. 1) Arthur Winslow (Nigel Hawthorne) talking initially with Ronnie (Guy Edwards). 2) When Kate (Rebecca Pidgeon) first entered Sir Robert's office, our very first glimpse of Sir Robert (Jeremy Northam) and his initial reaction. 3) Sir Robert interrogating Ronnie in his office. 4) The last verbal exchange between Pidgeon and Northam, as Kate and Sir Robert bid goodbye -- miss not a single word of this as you will be satisfied (probably more music to a woman's ears when Northam speaks!)

Music score by Alaric Jans complements the film effectively, so do the costume design by Consolata Boyle and photography by Benoit Delhomme. All in all, I repeat, a perfectly satisfying and enjoyable film. Bravo to Mamet, once again.

Other gems (screenplay-director) by Mamet besides "The Spanish Prisoner" 1998, are his first film "House of Games" 1987 and "Things Change" 1988. They both have the unique energy of Joe Mantegna, and fascinating strong lead performances from Lindsay Crouse in the former and Don Ameche in the latter -- perfect casting they were, with music score both by Alaric Jans. If you appreciate well written dialog and plot, miss these not.


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