Churchill: The Hollywood Years
|Churchill: The Hollywood Years|
UK Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Peter Richardson|
|Produced by||Jonathan Cavendish|
|Distributed by||Pathe Films|
Churchill: The Hollywood Years is a 2004 British film, directed by Peter Richardson. It stars Christian Slater as Winston Churchill, and Neve Campbell as Elizabeth II. Miranda Richardson and Antony Sher also co-star.
The film is a satire on the Hollywood take on history, such as U-571 (portraying the capture of an Enigma machine as being by the Americans rather than the British) and Pearl Harbor (where American participation in the Battle of Britain was exaggerated).
In this parody, the British court and war government consist mainly of idiots and traitors. Adolf Hitler moves into Buckingham Palace and plans to marry into the Windsors. A U.S. Army officer claims the iconic cigar-smoking PM was an actor named Roy Bubbles; however, he was actually USMC lieutenant Winston Churchill who had stolen an enigma code machine and then almost single-handedly won a very alternative battle for Britain.
- Oldway Mansion doubles as Buckingham Palace
- Powderham Castle, Exeter
- The old fish quay at Brixham, Devon doubles as Plymouth Docks
- The scene between Charoo and the waitress in a station tearoom, and Elizabeth's response on Churchill's arrival there, are parodies of scenes from Brief Encounter, between Stanley Holloway and Joyce Carey, and Trevor Howard and Celia Johnson, respectively
- The taxi driver and the King mistake Adolf Hitler for Charlie Chaplin, who played a spoof of Hitler in the satirical film The Great Dictator
- The "Siegfried Line" rap takes its title and (loosely) some of its lyrics from the British wartime song "We're Going to Hang out the Washing on the Siegfried Line". The introduction to the song is a reference to Top Gun.
- The song "Hitler Has Only Got One Ball" is frequently referenced, including once where it is delivered by Tommy Trinder
- The presence of "Irish Cockneys" is a reference to the steerage passengers in Titanic
- Churchill's final exit in a Spitfire references the portrayal of the American contribution to the Battle of Britain early in the film Pearl Harbor
- Brian Perkins' commentary on Hitler and Elizabeth's wedding is a parody of Richard Dimbleby's hushed radio commentaries of royal events
- Eva Braun is shown listening to the end of an episode of The Archers, even though it did not start until six years after the war ended
- Jim Jim Charoo takes his name from a song Dick van Dyke sings in Mary Poppins (he also lives on "Ye Olde Dick Van Dyke Street")
- Christian Slater as Winston Churchill
- Neve Campbell as Princess Elizabeth
- Miranda Richardson as Eva Braun
- Antony Sher as Adolf Hitler
- Harry Enfield as King George VI
- Jessica Oyelowo as Princess Margaret
- Henry Goodman as Franklin D. Roosevelt
- Jon Culshaw as Tony Blair
- Romany Malco as Denzil Eisenhower
- David Schneider as Joseph Goebbels
- Phil Cornwell as Martin Bormann
- Steve O'Donnell as Hermann Göring
- John Fabian as Victor Sylvester
- Rik Mayall as Baxter
- Bob Mortimer as Potter
- Vic Reeves as Bendle
- Ashleigh Caldwell as Bette
- Sally Phillips as Waitress
- Steve Pemberton as Chester
- Hamish McColl as Captain Davies (present-day)
- Leslie Phillips as Lord W'ruff
- Mackenzie Crook as Jim Charoo
- Brian Perkins as Radio Presenter
- James Dreyfus as Mr. Teasy-Weasy
Phillip French writing in The Observer called the film "a hit and miss affair". Peter Bradshaw in The Guardian gave it three stars and said "It's wildly uneven and very broad, but there are some laughs in Peter Richardson's Comic Strip fantasy of Churchill's real life as a kickass action hero". However, Nev Peirce on the BBC's website panned the film, saying "Sadly, Peter Richardson suffers the fate of many satirists; in trying to mock bad movies, he's simply made a bad movie". The film grossed only £148,326 on its opening weekend across 170 screens in the UK.
- French, Philip (5 December 2004). "We'll fight them on Sunset Boulevard..." The Observer. Retrieved 6 December 2011.
- Bradshaw, Peter (3 December 2004). "Churchill:The Hollywood Years". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 December 2011.
- Pierce, Nev. "Churchill: The Hollywood Years (2004)". BBCi Films, 02 December 2004. BBC. Retrieved 6 December 2011.
- "Churchill: The Hollywood Years". Box Office Mojo. IMDb.com, Inc. Retrieved 6 December 2011.