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Henry V (89 movie version)

Character Profiles with Pictures Links Plot Summary and Review Merchandise & Collectibles

Characters

King Henry V played by Kenneth Branagh

In the movie Henry is a real go getter. While kings historically lead battles from the rear Henry just rushes right up to the front like an animal. While wearing royal crests and the decorative wardrobe of a king he covers himself not in royal robes but in enemy blood. After Agincourt has been won he courts the French princess Kate in his attempts to unite the kingdoms of France and England. Tough but just Henry hangs a friend for thievery but believes that justice towards those who are conquered is a requirement for sustained rule.

Exeter played by Brian Blessed

This is one of King Henry's right hand men. When the Battle for Agincourt commences Exeter is right out there in the fray. With a wicked smile on his face he swings his weapon repeatedly and with joy. Like a barbarian Exeter represents the strong bruttishness of soldiers that would have been required in times of swords and armor. The actor that portrayed Exeter is famous for his role at the King of the Hawkmen in Flash Gordon.

French King played by Paul Scofield

The French King plays a role of reservation throughout the film. When King Henry states his intentions to exercize his claim to France peacefully or through force the French king is forced to respond in kind. He sends his eldest son, the Dauphant and a mighty army to stop Henry. When this army is crushed the French King is forced into a negotiation for his power which includes his own daughter Kate.

Katherine (Kate) the French Princess played by Emma Thompson

Katherine is a soft spoken French woman who has a rudimentary knowledge of the English Language. When Henry V negotiates for peace with France Katherine herself was part of the settlement.

Thief Who was Hung

This is one of King Henry's friends from the past. When he is caught stealing from a French province that Henry has acquired he is tried for thievery. King Henry himself supervises the execution of this thief who was once his friend.

French Messenger

This guy first meets Henry V before the start of the Battle of Agincourt. He is sent by his superiors to see if Henry the king will consider paying a ransom in exchange for his life being spared. Henry gets very mad at this concept and replies "bid them achieve me and then sell my bones."

A French Leader of the Agincourt Battle

This French commander personally leads the attack on King Henry's forces. He dons a protective helmet and mutters about how very little that will need to be done to defeat Henry's forces. When all of his ranks are broke and his army is defeated he agrees to help his assistant slaughter all of the English boys who were present at the battle as apprentices.

Narrator played by Derek Jacobi

This is the voice that unites the entire movie. When battles wane he appears to explain the action. When new scenes need a transition he speaks. In the modern age of digital transitions like wipes and dissolves this narrator gives an old fashioned touch to the movie and its heritage based on a William Shakespeare play.

Duke of York

In the film this brave soul volunteers to lead the attack on the French. He fights valiently and dies with a swarm of French swords stabbing through his body while blood pours from his mouth.

The Three Traitors

Early in the film King Henry discovers that these three men who have been spying for the French. Before telling them that they have been discovered he asks them how they would deal with traitors. They claim that no mercy should be given. After hearing this, King Henry promptly has them stripped of their rank and executes them for high treason.

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