In May 1940, the fate of Western Europe hangs on British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who must decide whether to negotiate with Adolf Hitler, or fight on knowing that it could mean a humiliating defeat for Britain and its empire.
During the Cold War, an American lawyer is recruited to defend an arrested Soviet spy in court, and then help the CIA facilitate an exchange of the spy for the Soviet captured American U2 spy plane pilot, Francis Gary Powers.
During World War II, as Adolf Hitler's awesomely powerful Wehrmacht rampages across Europe, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Neville Chamberlain, is forced to resign, recommending Winston Churchill as his replacement. But even in his early days as the country's leader, Churchill is under pressure to commence peace negotiations with the German dictator or to fight head-on the seemingly invincible Nazi regime, whatever the cost. However difficult and dangerous his decision may be, Churchill has no choice but to shine in the country's darkest hour.Written by
Gary Oldman's work in this film earned him the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama, the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role, and the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role. At the 71st British Academy Film Awards, the film received nine nominations, including Best Film and Best British Film, Best Actor in a Leading Role (for Oldman), and Best Actress in a Supporting Role (for Kristin Scott Thomas). See more »
Four RAF fighter planes are seen flying over London in a finger four formation. While Luftwaffe had started using that tactic earlier, the RAF used a three plane "vic" formation until the end phases of Battle of Britain. See more »
King George VI:
Go to the people. Let them instruct you. Quite silently, they usually do. But tell them... the truth unvarnished.
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Disclaimer in closing credits: "The depictions of tobacco smoking contained in this film are based solely on artistic consideration and are not intended to promote tobacco consumption. The Surgeon General has determined that there are serious health risks associated with smoking and with secondhand smoke." See more »
It's a one man show about one of the towering figures of the 20th Century and what a show it is. Gary Oldman has been able to be Sid Vicious in "Sid And Nancy" with the same outstanding commitment and extraordinary results. Joe Wright, the gifted director of "Atonement" presents us with an irresistible version of Churchill through the magic powers of Oldman but sometimes he doesn't seem to trust the power of what he has in his hand. Eccentric cuts in the middle of a famous speech for instance and other stylistic distractions arrive with irritating frequency but that doesn't spoil. too much, the joy and fun of seeing Gary Olman in action. Also interesting to notice, Dunkirk provides a very moving moment for the second time this year.
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