23 user 10 critic

Into the Storm (2009)

Continuing the storyline of The Gathering Storm (2002), Churchill at War is a look at the former British prime minister's life and career at the end of WWII.


Hugh Whitemore

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Nominated for 3 Golden Globes. Another 5 wins & 32 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Brendan Gleeson ... Winston Churchill
Clive Mantle ... Thompson
Adrian Scarborough ... Sawyers
Jack Shepherd ... Neville Chamberlain
Donald Sumpter ... Lord Halifax
Andrew Havill ... King's Private Secretary
Iain Glen ... King George VI
James D'Arcy ... Jock Colville
Bill Paterson ... Clement Attlee
Adrian Fort Adrian Fort ... Tory MP
Shaughan Seymour Shaughan Seymour ... Photographer
Bruce Alexander ... Duff Cooper
Janet McTeer ... Clementine Churchill
Kathryn Sumner Kathryn Sumner ... Mary Churchill
Michael Elwyn ... Charles Moran


Winston Churchill is named Prime Minister on the very day the Nazis launch their invasion of the low countries and France. The immediate concern is the fate of the British Expeditionary Force now trapped with their back to the sea. The evacuation at Dunquerque saved most of them. Churchill formed a unified government with the Labour party and was steadfast in refusing to negotiate with the Germans. He developed a personal relationship with U.S. President Roosevelt but England (as Churchill always referred to the UK) stood alone until the U.S. entered the war. By war's end however, Labour won the election and Churchill was out of office. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A relentless leader is the greatest weapon of war.


TV-PG | See all certifications »

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Official Sites:

HBO Films





Release Date:

31 May 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Into the Storm: Churchill at War See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


The film Churchill and his men and wife watch is "That Hamilton Woman", a 1941 movie narrating the affair between admiral Horatio Nelson and Lady Emma Hamilton. In real life, Churchill was a great admirer of Nelson and, reportedly, he actually ghost penned the script (meaning that he wrote the script without accepting any credit for it). He also claimed several times that this was his favorite movie of all times. See more »


When Churchill is dictating his famous "Never Surrender" speech and walks from one room to another, a modern door closer can be seen on the top center of the frame. See more »


Features That Hamilton Woman (1941) See more »

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User Reviews

Good but not great
29 November 2015 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Though "Into the Storm" is possibly a sequel to "The Gathering Storm," it can't hold a candle to it. Nor can the performance of Brendan Gleeson, as good as it was, approach Albert Finney's performance in The Gathering Storm.

This movie deals with Churchill being named Prime Minister and his concern for the British force which is now trapped, his destruction of the French fleet, his forming of a unified government, meeting with Stalin and Roosevelt, and his final ousting from office in 1945.

Naturally, as some of the reviews here point out, there was a great deal left out. One of the reviewers states that Roosevelt and Churchill are responsible for World War II by cutting off access to trade, and that Hitler was faced with starving his people.

I suppose that's one way to look at it, and one can spin events any way one wants. The fact is, Hitler couldn't have cared less about the German people and he starved them anyway. He took their pots and pans and anything else they had, including teenage boys when they were needed to fight. And in the end, when it was obvious Germany was losing, he blamed the Germans. To present him as a concerned dictator who cared about his people - I'm sorry, it's ludicrous.

The author Marcia Davenport (The Valley of Decision), who was in love with Czech freedom fighter Jan Maserek, said that Roosevelt and Churchill sold Eastern Europe down the river. The reference to Poland toward the end of the movie hints at letting Stalin have Eastern Europe rather than go to war again.

Getting back to this film - yes, a great deal was left out by necessity and yes, I suppose to some it seems too simplistic. I, too, felt it was on the sketchy side.

But what bothered me were all these famous phrases of Churchill's just tossed off in normal conversation, so that when he talked, he always sounded like he was making a speech. For me it gave the production a very stagy feel. Then, when it came for him to actually make a speech, they left out his biggest one.

The acting was good, as the cast was top drawer, with Janet McTeer as Clementine Churchill, Iain Glen as King George, Len Cariou as FDR, and Aleksey Petrenko as Josef Stalin.

For some reason, as I read through the reviews, some people expected these actors to do Rich Little impressions of these people and were complimentary of Petrenko because he looked like Stalin. I don't think lookalikes and vocal impressions were the point of the film.

If you're a novice and intend to read up on some of the other aspects of World War II, this is a good starting point. It's by no means definitive.

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