4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Mrs Henderson Presents  [DVD] (DVD)
I was surprised by several of the reviews of this film that rubbished it, but without really seeming to give a reason for their opinions other than 'I didn't like it'
Okay, so this isn't the best film that was ever written, and even if I thought it was someone else would disagree on principle but it was, as the title says thoroughly entertaining.
Mrs Henderson Presents, based on true life events, follows the story of Mrs Laura Henderson (Judi Dench), starting on the day of her husbands funeral, just before the second world was. She begins to look for ways to fill her suddenly empty life, and while driving around London lights upon a theatre, which, on the spur of the moment, she buys. She employs Vivian Van Damm (Bob Hoskins) to run the theatre, and they eventually hit on the idea of having the girls perform nude in an attempt to get audience numbers. This also results in Mrs Henderson and Van Damm very much taking the girls under their wings, especially Maureen played by Kelly Reilly. The arrival or the war theatens to halt their performances, but they fight on.
That's as much of the plot as I can tell without actually giving anything away.
The script is well written and apart from one brief moment when I was sat there looking slightly confused and baffled, is easy to for follow.
The cast were generally very good, Judi Dench well deserves her Oscar and Bafta nominations, and as far as I can see deserved to win them, especially when you see her make her stirring speech at the end. Bob Hoskins, who I normally have little or no opinion of was very good, giving some impressive arguements when pitted against Mrs Henderson. Kelly Reilly gave an impresive and surprisingly innocent, and even more surprsingly believable performance as one of the main performers. And much to my surprise Will Young, who I normally can't stand was very good, if a little wet behind the ears.
As you would expect for a film set partially during the war there is sadness, and this was excellently done, seeming alot less contrived than I had expected, and striking in a way I definitely hadn't expected.
Over all a good afternoons entertainment that I would recommend to all. My only disappointment is completely inrelated to the film, and that is that I now what to know more about Mrs Henderson and have completely failed to find anything written about her.