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Mrs Henderson Presents [2005] [DVD]

Judi Dench , Bob Hoskins , Stephen Frears    Suitable for 12 years and over   DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
Price: 2.94 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Judi Dench, Bob Hoskins, Will Young, Christopher Guest, Thelma Barlow
  • Directors: Stephen Frears
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Audio Description: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 20 Mar 2006
  • Run Time: 103 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000CQO6IY
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 8,358 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



The blitz-bombing of London in World War II provides the serious backdrop for the uplifting entertainment of Mrs. Henderson Presents, a delightful comedy anchored by the flawless performances of Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins.

After losing a son in World War I, and becoming a widow in 1937, the wealthy and respectable Mrs. Henderson (Dench) decides that the best way to support soldiers going off to battle is to give them a wartime send-off they'll never forget. Thus, she buys and renovates the Windmill Theatre in London's Soho district, hires Mr. Vivian Van Damm (Hoskins) as the impresario of an all-day musical variety show called "Revudeville," and secures permission from the censorious Lord Cromer (Christopher Guest) to include naked women in the stage show--on the condition that the ladies remain still onstage to qualify as "art," like nude portraits in a gallery, with the "foliage" of their "midlands" discreetly obscured. "Revudeville" is an instant hit, British propriety remains tastefully intact, and as The Windmill's fortunes rise, fall, and rise again, Mrs. Henderson Presents develops an emotional depth and good-natured nobility that's perfectly matched to the comedy of tweaking British manners.

Working from an eloquently witty, fact-based screenplay by Martin Sherman, director Stephen Frears (High Fidelity) brings out the best in a well-chosen cast, and Andrew Dunn's cinematography (enhanced by judicious use of digital effects to show the London blitz in progress) casts a warm, inviting glow over this winning tale of show-biz tenacity in the best and worst of times. --Jeff Shannon

Product Description

DVD 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, 5060002834695, 2005 UKPAL 2

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
60 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic entertainment for all ages 28 Jan 2006
This is a great movie,the fictionalised account of Laura Henderson a rich widow in the 1930's who bought the decrepit Windmill Theatre in Soho and turned into a legendary venue during the war years.The Windmills Reveue-deville shows were the first to show actual nudity on stage and became a sensation.All this is well put together in a great movie with outstanding performances from Dame Judi,Bob Hoskins as her right hand man and manager Vivian Van Damme the brains behind the operation,and singer Will Young playing a 1930's version of himself a posh,gay,chap ,it fairly zips along and is well worth watching certainly one for Sunday nights with the whole family in front of the tv.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars You will love or hate this film. 15 Jun 2006
By Marshall Lord TOP 500 REVIEWER
This is one of those films which you either love or hate. It is based on a true story.

If you'd told me before I had heard of "Mrs Henderson Presents", that in one of the more moving and amusing films I would see this year, the actress playing a septuagenarian widow would completely steal the show from a bevy of attractive younger women who spend much of the film without their clothes, I would have found it hard to believe but the answer can be explained in two words - Judi Dench.

Dame Judi plays Mrs Lilian Henderson: the film starts with her husband's funeral, and shortly thereafter in one of the many sad parts of the film she flies to France to visit the grave of her only son, who had been killed in the first world war aged 21. "Bored with widowhood" and looking for something to do, she buys the Windmill theatre and hires Vivian Van Damm (Bob Hoskins) to run it. Come the second world war, she decides to entertain the troops by putting on displays of naked girls.

The film is at times very sad, and at others very funny. All the acting is superb, especially from Dench, Hoskins, Christopher Guest who plays the Lord Chamberlain, Thelma Barlow as one of Mrs Henderson's friends, plus Will Young and Kelly Reilly as cast members. Some people wondered if a more extreme parody of the Lord Chamberlain by soneone like John Cleese would have been funnier: personally I thought Christopher Guest's understated embarrasment and outrage worked better than a slapstick, over-the-top peformance would have.

This film could easily have been rude, cheesy, or unsophisticated, but it was none of those things. Clearly not everyone liked it, but a lot of other people did, and I was one of them. I think it deserved the critical acclaim.
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74 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "I'd rather drink Ink" 27 Jan 2006
By A Customer
Stephen Frears directs acting legend Dame Judy Dench in Mrs. Henderson Presents, a spectacular and thoroughly entertaining film that is an absolute delight from beginning to end. Expect Oscar nominations for both Bob Hopkins and the legendary Dench.
Based on a true story, the movie begins in 1937 when the wealthy Laura Henderson (Dench) has just been widowed. Refusing to go gently into widowhood, Laura heeds the advice of her friend Lady Conway (a riotous Thelma Barlow) and finds herself a hobby. But she just can't handle needlepoint, and being a board member on various charities just isn't her thing, so instead, she decides to buy a run down property on Great Windmill Street in Soho with the intention of turning it into a theater.
Of course, Mrs. Henderson knows nothing about running a music hall, so she enlists the help of Vivian Van Damm (Bob Hoskins), a currently unemployed theatre manager. The problem is that Laura and Vivian don't exactly see eye to eye - Vivian sees Laura as snotty and rude, a product of her privileged class, while Laura views Vivian as "Jewish" a cigar smoker who is kind of low class.
It doesn't help that they also end up clashing professionally. They're both strong willed individuals, who each have different artistic visions for the theater, with most of their time taken up arguing and trading acerbic barbs at one another. But eventually they manage to sort out their differences and make a go at it, and success comes quickly, with shows running almost continually. This daily novelty, however, can't withstand competition from movie houses and other vaudeville shows in the West End.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MRS HENDERSON PRESENTS 19 Feb 2006
By A Customer
I went to see mrs henderson presents at the cinema and it is really a brillient film!! Will Young is really good as bertie and Dame Judie Dench and Bob Hoskins are really funny.
It is really well acted, it is great that they brought the story of the windmill theatre to life. Both my children aged 12 and 13 also really enjoyed the film.
I have already pre ordered it just to watch it again!!!!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it 3 Nov 2006
This was a gentle, surprising tale with amusing overtones, which touched the soul, all the more as it is based on a true story, however romanticised. Judi Dench and the supporting cast are truly wonderful and I could watch it over and over again.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "I'm bored with widowhood." 25 April 2006
This true story opens in 1930s London where wealthy dowager Laura Henderson (Judi Dench) has just been widowed and is at a loss as to how to fill her time. On a lark, buys a broken-down music hall in the West End and hires Vivian Van Damm (Bob Hoskins) to run the revue. He's every bit as stubborn and opinionated as she is and the two make an uneasy team at first. To boost sagging ticket sales, Mrs. Henderson suggests the show use nude models in tableaux. The theatre becomes a big hit, especially with the young soldiers during wartime. Mrs. Henderson and Van Damm learn to trust and respect each other, after sharing their deepest secrets.

This movie is absolutely charming, thanks to the wonderful Judy Dench and Bob Hoskins. Dench is always such a pleasure to watch; she simply owns the screen. Her character is snobbish, rigid, and quite loveable. Hoskins is the perfect match for her. He's just as outrageously snobbish as she is, and their scenes together are the best in the movie. There's lots of 30s and 40s music and lots of nudes. It's a touching, sweet little film, and knowing it really happened makes it even better.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Mrs Henderson Presents
loved this movie and so did the people l shared it with. funny at times and serious in other so it all balanced out
Published 26 days ago by house elf
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable.
Seen this film several times so when I came across it I had to have my own copy. Love the story line with Bob Hoskins, Judy Dench and of course Will Young
Published 1 month ago by steve
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprising
This is an amazing film and Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins are wonderful. This really is a must see film and quite surprising
Published 4 months ago by jacqui
4.0 out of 5 stars Mrs Henderson presents
my husband had seen the beginning of the film a few times whilst on holiday, and was desperate to see the end. He really enjoyed it.
Published 6 months ago by Christine Horton
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT FILM
Didn't know what to expect but with Judi Dench starring it couldn't fail to be a great film - which it was.
Published 8 months ago by Carolyn MOULET
4.0 out of 5 stars CLEVER AND WITTY
The opening credits have the appearance of a 1960's comedy. While this movie is clever and witty, I would place it into a drama category that uses humor to prevent dry boring... Read more
Published 9 months ago by The Movie Guy
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent acting
As expected from Judy Dench and Bob Hoskins an interesting combination. An interesting story from a period known to me. I don't usually like musicals but this one I did. Read more
Published 10 months ago by helen
5.0 out of 5 stars Another masterpiece by Miss Dench
A great film based, I believe, on near fact. Very good cast - good acting and direction throughout. Thought Mr Hoskins portrayal very good.
Published 14 months ago by Mrs. J. Drinkwater
5.0 out of 5 stars Film with good feel factor.
Excellent film with a good feel factor. Prompt delivery and was a fair price. Well satisfied with the DVD film.
Published 14 months ago by RC
5.0 out of 5 stars British eccentricity at its finest! Excellent film.
I searched out this film after discovering my late mother was one of the fan dancers at the Windmill Theatre and really didn't know anything about the theatre or what it was all... Read more
Published 15 months ago by LusciousTheLock
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