Nelson & His World

Churchill and Lady Hamilton
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Author:  Devenish [ Mon Aug 27, 2012 10:27 am ]
Post subject:  Churchill and Lady Hamilton

I have just been watching the 2009 film ’Into the Storm’, about Sir Winston Churchill during the Second World War. Winston was played by Brendan Gleeson, who many may remember as ’Mad Eye Moody’ in the Harry Potter films. I thought he made a very creditable Churchill.

One scene in the film showed the Churchill’s and other guests gathering to watch a film, I think at Chartwell, and it was mentioned by someone that they were to see his ’favourite film’. That of course set me to thinking, while they were seating themselves, ’I wonder if it’ll be ’Lady Hamilton’? Naturally, it was. The particular scene they depicted was that in which Nelson made his speech to the Admiralty Board, and which of course included the line, ’You can’t make peace with dictators!’

Churchill chuckled at that, since presumably it was part of the material he is supposed to have provided for the film, and which of course was largely propaganda. He talked quite a lot over the film, much to the annoyance of ’Clemmy’ his wife and beginning, when the film starts, with Alexander Korda. The whole scene was rather an unexpected surprise.

Some while ago I read an account of the Newfoundland Conference in 1941, before the US had entered the war, when Churchill met President Roosevelt on board the battleship Prince of Wales. During their hard deliberations over the Atlantic Charter, the ’relaxation’ one evening was to watch ’Lady Hamilton’, and the author of the piece appeared quite taken to see the no-nonsense Churchill in tears.

If you get a chance to see the film, it’s well worth it – and not only for the Lady Hamilton scene!

Anna, I know we've mentioned this film before, but I can't find the thread. So, please move it if you think fit.

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