Mrs Henderson Presents

Watch Mrs Henderson Presents

"The show must go on, but the clothes must come off."
  • R
  • 2005
  • 1 hr 43 min
  • 7.0  (16,259)
  • 71

Mrs Henderson Presents is a 2005 British-American film that tells the story of the Windmill Theatre, an iconic London theater. The film follows the true events of how the theater became famous for daring to show nudity on stage, which was forbidden at the time when the story is set, between 1937 and 1945 during World War II. The movie stars Judi Dench, who portrays Laura Henderson, a wealthy and recently widowed woman who is seeking something to occupy her time. Upon discovering the Windmill Theatre, she sees an opportunity to invest, and along with the help of her friend, the theater manager, Vivian Van Damm (played by Bob Hoskins), she turns the theater into a unique and innovative venue.

The story is set against the backdrop of the Second World War, and as the city and the country come under attack, the theater's performances become a symbol of defiance against the bombings and the restrictions of war. Mrs Henderson and Vivian Van Damm used their imaginations to keep the theater relevant and keep their audiences entertained throughout the war.

One of the unique features of the Windmill Theatre is that the performers don't move, but the sets behind them change. This allowed the theater to present continuous shows, without any interruptions, and it was revolutionary for its time.

The theater was also the first to showcase nude performers, referred to as the "Windmill Girls," which pushed the boundaries of decency laws in Britain. The decision to show nudity on stage was never without controversy, and both the theater and its performers were threatened with legal action.

Mrs Henderson Presents is not just a story about a theater, but also a story about two people who come together and create something extraordinary. The dynamic between Dench and Hoskins is the highlight of the movie, and their friendship is at the center of the story. They are complete opposites, and yet their differences work together to make the Windmill Theatre a success.

In addition to the excellent performances by Dench and Hoskins, the movie also features a stellar supporting cast that includes Kelly Reilly as Maureen, a young performer who becomes a star at the Windmill; Will Young, as the theater's musical director, Bertie; and Christopher Guest, as Lord Cromer, who oversees the regulation of the theaters.

The film is directed by Stephen Frears, who has a reputation for making films with strong female leads. He is known for previously directing films such as Dangerous Liaisons, The Queen, Philomena, and more.

The first half of the movie presents an almost romanticized view of the efforts made by Mrs Henderson and Vivian Van Damm as they create the Windmill Theatre. Their constant bickering and playful banter are charming and help to create a warm and friendly atmosphere. But as the war continues, the movie begins to take a darker turn.

As the bombs rain down from the sky, the theater is hit and destroyed, and people are killed. The continuing war and the danger it brings force the theater to close, and the stars of the Windmill must take their show on the road to keep their art alive.

Despite the challenges and the tragedies that occur, the film remains uplifting and hopeful. The spirit of the Windmill Theatre and its performers is unbreakable even during the darkest moments.

Mrs Henderson Presents is a film about the relationship between two people, who work together to create something exceptional. It is also about the power of entertainment to bring joy and happiness, even in the most challenging times. With the outstanding performances by Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins, the movie delivers humor, romance, and tragedy, and it remains a timeless piece of cinema today.

Mrs Henderson Presents is a 2005 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 43 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.0 and a MetaScore of 71.

Mrs Henderson Presents
Where to Watch Mrs Henderson Presents
Mrs Henderson Presents is available to watch free on Pluto TV, Tubi TV and Vudu Free. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Mrs Henderson Presents for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 43 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.0  (16,259)
  • Metascore