Wonderful character development!
A movie that not only functions as a solid scarefest but a razor-sharp satire.
It's funny, it's tense, it features two great performances from two actors and the director expertly creates a web of odd tension where you actually don't know what is happening for the majority of the run time.
what a terribly boring film. I'm sorry but this is absolutely not deserving of best picture and will be forgotten quickly. Entertaining and engaging cinema? No. Nothing performances with flat faces and mistaking silence for subtlety.
It is one film who must see it. first - for a form of admirable grace to tell a story in inspird manner. for the images and atmosphere and Michael Gambon work. not the last, for the virtue to not be usefull to compare it with the others films about Churchill. because, scene by scene, it becomes a personal story. about politics, family, duty and time. it has the virtues of a confesion . because it brokes the problems of phsical resemblance, historical accuracy, comparaisons between history book and the vision of Charles Sturrige. it is easy to define as a beautiful TV film. but, if you are real honest, you admit than is more than a beautiful film.
There is very little that is factual or worthwhile about this film. Churchill was not only a key architect of D-Day, he was central to its success. He was not the dithering, raving fool relegated to the sidelines of launching Operation Overlord as portrayed here.The story of an angst-ridden Churchill, hysterically raving against the Normandy invasion and being soundly chastised by Eisenhower and Montgomery, is pure fiction posing egregiously as "history". There is little to commend this film as it laboriously drags itself through one of the most momentous periods in true history. The characters do not reveal their true nature but are simple, badly drawn (and highly erroneous) caricatures, the story telling is pure torture and its irrelevance to a meaningful interpretation of history and the men who made it cannot be understated.I cannot help but find it offensive that this movie could ever have been made under the title of Churchill, as if this is the definitive interpretation of the man. It is a travesty, adding nothing of value to the volumes of historical analyses that have taken him as their subject.
Settling down for a nostalgic immersion in a post war period drama, with a martini in my hand, I was surprised to be nodding off after ten minutes or so. I now realize the potential of this movie as a sleeping pill and intend to keep it in the drug cabinet. I have recently watched too many of Michael Gambon's performances slide into apparent mordancy with dismay. A bad double episode of Downton without Maggie Smith is one way to describe this tedious rubbish. There was so much dramatic potential in the story which was routinely squandered, presumably in order to dumb it down for a broader audience. I would have thought that a two hour monologue by the late Les Dawson about his piles would have been more entertaining. Do something else. Don't waste an evening on this.
I cannot understand how few reviewers here are complimentary. Michael Gambon delivers a magnificent performance, true to what we know of Churchill's personality and complex nature. It doesn't matter to me that the actor doesn't look very much like the great man - he PRESENTS a great man in a health crisis to perfection. LIndsay Duncan is 'Clemmie' exactly as I remember her from the public image of the time. The way her hair is done is exquisitely correct. I was eleven and I remember the drama of Churchill's illness from the newspapers. I remember, as a boy, noting that Churchill's personal doctor was a certain Lord Moran who came and went initially at the famous front door of Number 10. We all knew that Chartwell was the Churchill country seat (not his 'ancestral home' which, as we know, was Blenheim Palace where he was born.) It was wonderful that the filming took place at Chartwell. We also knew that Churchill's children were difficult, particularly the boorish Randolph, and that Sir Winston was probably to blame for having neglected them through his undoubted self-absorption. Romola Garai, as always, creates a memorable personality with her entirely believable ace nurse. The casting is superb, the settings perfect and the art direction highly sensitive. And the cars! How I loved the shiny cars of my childhood. There's a pristine, bulbous Austin that I remember admiring as a boy. Delicious visual details are abundant in the film. There were many moments when I was surprised by my own tears, notably when Lady Churchill, having warmed sufficiently to the newly-met young nurse, poured out the story of the child she and Winston had lost; to this wise, down-to-earth, delightful young woman.These were probably the last days of the "right to rule" self-image of the Tory Party. For England's powerful middle classes it was still normal to think of a Labour Government as a temporary aberration. The moment I saw the book that Winston inscribed to his nurse I recalled that not even the first volume of "A History of the English-Speaking Peoples" had yet been published. But it didn't matter in the slightest. It was not a gaffe. It was an inspired and moving moment in the plan of this outstanding film. The acting skills on display in 'Churchill's Secret' are - I submit - breathtaking. Why do we take for granted the artistry of our wonderful British actors? We need to show them our love with the compliments they deserve.