In the 1930s, Sir Winston Churchill (Albert Finney) was out of government, sitting as a backbench Member of Parliament. His was a lonely voice warning about German rearmament and the coming of a second major war on the continent. He lost a great deal of money in the Wall Street crash and now writes a biography of his ancestor the Duke of Marlborough, a newspaper column, and it's his only means of support. He has a close-knit group of supporters, not the least of whom is his wife Clementine (Vanessa Redgrave), who he loves very dearly. As he continues to press his concerns about Hitler, he is cast as a warmonger and frequently shouted down in Parliament by members on both sides of the aisle. With reliable information from a Foreign Office civil servant who feels the government is not accurately reporting on rearmament, he provides accurate figures to Parliament and the tide begins to turn. With the on-set of World War II in September 1939, Churchill returns to government as the First ...Written by
The famous speech Churchill wants to revise (and later delivers in the House of Commons) in the beginning of the film ("To see Mr Gandhi, a seductive Mid-Temple Lawyer ... posing as a half-naked fakir in a manner quite well known in the East, striding up the steps of the Vice-Regal palace to parley on equal terms with the representative of the King Emperor") was actually delivered in 1930, whereas the film starts some years later. See more »
Sir Robert Vansittart:
Do you know what Lloyd George said about him? "He'd use the skin of his mother as a drum to sound his own praises."
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Albert Finney is an ASTOUNDING Churchill. Voice. Appearance. Mannerisms. He's got it all down. Vanessa Redgrave is equally good as "Clemmie." I don't know whether I enjoyed this film because it was about history or because it was a masterful bit of acting. It's historically accurate and shot creatively. Those overrhead shots down into the courtyards are masterful and effective. Lets hope HBO plans one or two more films with Finney and Redgrave, one about the war years and the other about Churchill after the war. One thing puzzled me though. Two huge events of the era were not even mentioned...Edward's abdication and the 1938 Munich crisis.
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