Henry V, directed by Laurence Olivier, who also stars as the protagonist, is an adaptation of William Shakespeare’s play of the same title.
It is the first film that was made based on the above-mentioned play and it earned Olivier an honorary Academy Award. This production draws attention to the stage in particular, since the film starts in the Globe Theatre, where a performance of Henry V is about to begin. Olivier gives us a thorough depiction of the atmosphere of the Elizabethan theatre, focusing on how the play would have been staged in Shakespeare’s own day.
Then the film gradually turns into a cinematic portrayal of the battle of Agincourt in a real setting. The King’s famous Saint Crispin’s Day speech is representative of his great regality, courage and firm belief that the war he is fighting is just and necessary. Some of the greatest features of the film are the costumes, in line with Henry V’s reign, and the soundtrack, particularly meaningful during the battle scenes.
Worth noting also are the shots that help us understand the fundamental themes of the film. Above all, the close-up of the intertwined hands of Henry V and his wife, Catherine of Valois, and their emblem rings, which underscores the beginning of a promising alliance with France.
Watching this film you’ll feel as if you were at the Globe Theatre during the performance of a real Shakespearean play. Make sure not to miss it, it would be a shame!
Autori: Ludovica Boccato, Ludovica Di Virgilio, Anna Menegaldo, Stella Picca e Alessandro Vendramin