Hyde Park on Hudson


Action / Biography / Comedy / Drama / History

Plot summary

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Top cast

Olivia Colman Photo
Olivia Colman as Elizabeth
Laura Linney Photo
Laura Linney as Daisy
Olivia Williams Photo
Olivia Williams as Eleanor
Bill Murray Photo
Bill Murray as FDR
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
750.57 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 34 min
P/S 0 / 2
1.40 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 34 min
P/S ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by MartinHafer8 / 10

Far better than its meager score would suggest

"Hyde Park on Hudson" is a film with a rather low score on IMDB, as it's currently 5.8. With such a low score (making it a slightly below average picture),I really expected far less from this film. I think its low score can be attributed to several factors. It's not a 'big movie'. That means that it was never meant to be a big screen hit...more a simple movie with relatively modest expectations. It certainly is no blockbuster based on its style and pace. I also think it's about a topic that, frankly, most folks today simple couldn't care less about...unless you are a history teacher or lover of history. As a retired history teacher, it was exactly the sort of film I'd enjoy...but not most people. Finally, I am sure some were disappointed because although I felt Bill Murray was jut fine playing Franklin Roosevelt, his performance didn't seem like an exact imitation...more his homage to the man. And, they made him look FDR-ish...but it was never meant to be exactly him. Prosthetics and even more makeup might have done the trick...but this didn't seem to be the intent of the filmmakers.

The story is based on a series of letters apparently discovered after the death of FDR's distant cousin, Daisy (Laura Linney). While there had been rumors of their affair (as well as rumors of other affairs of Roosevelt),these letters proved that their friendship was, at times, far closer than just friends. However, the film is about the relationship but only when it first began as well as when it coincided with King George VI's visit to see Roosevelt at his Hyde Park residence in the late spring of 1939....just before the beginning of WWII in September of that same year.

I think limiting the scope of the film to mostly 1939 was a good choice and the film is less about the affair and more about the time period. Because of this, it really doesn't romanticize this adulterous affair....more just chronicles what happened and how it coincided with the King's visit. In other words, it's more like a snap shot of the period and is well worth seeing. In fact, I nearly gave the film a 9...it was so good in so many ways. The highlights for me were the cinematography, the lovely period music and incidental music as well as showing more of Roosevelt's personality than other overly idealized films (such as the rather saccharine "Sunrise at Campobello"). Well worth seeing, but certainly not a film for everyone. Most young people would be bored by it despite its quality.

By the way, I do have a couple final comments. First, I loved some of the moments in the film with just FDR and George VI. In particular, one little scene almost brought me to tears when FDR took a very fatherly sort of attitude towards the younger king. Second, and it relates to this, I wonder HOW the filmmakers knew about these moments, as Daisy was NOT present and I don't know if any other record of these thing existed. Perhaps the filmmakers made it up, perhaps it was just inspired by actual events or perhaps it was real...I really can't say.

Reviewed by bkoganbing6 / 10

Entertaining Royalty

1939 was an off year for the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt. The New Deal had run its course and the off year elections of the previous year had brought a lot more Republicans to both houses of Congress and they affectively blocked further reforming initiatives. But what they also did was bring an increasing isolationism to Congress both in numbers and in stridency. Farsighted people saw that sooner or later we'd be in another war with Germany with the United Kingdom as an ally again.

An unprecedented media event took place that year. King George VI and Queen Elizabeth became the first reigning British monarchs to visit the USA and FDR entertained them at his mother's place Hyde Park On Hudson which was the full title of the well known Roosevelt estate. It wasn't Franklin's place, it was that of his mother Sara Delano Roosevelt, an imperious woman who never liked her daughter-in-law Eleanor. As for the first lady, we now know it ceased to be a marriage long ago and was a political partnership. She had her own place down the road called Val Kill Cottage.

For the King and Queen who had ancestors with all kinds of marital arrangements this should have been nothing new. But Bertie and Elizabeth were something unique, a devoted married couple with absolutely no outside affairs on either side. Samuel West and Olivia Colman are the Royals and while both are a bit put off by FDR's personal life, the King is there on a mission of good will involving the very life of his country.

For state occasions Eleanor who is played by Olivia Williams is around, but FDR likes to have his cake and eat it too. He has both secretary Marguerite 'Missy' LeHand and cousin Margaret Suckley around as well. On that weekend Laura Linney as Suckley finds out she's just part of a harem and its Elizabeth Marvel as Missy who in the film's climax scene tells her the facts of life.

It's through the eyes of Margaret Suckley who lived to be a 100 years old that we view Hyde Park On Hudson. What's really good about this film is there is a nice bumper crop of good parts for women. And it's their performances that drive this film.

I was not really ready for Bill Murray as FDR though. Having seen such people as Ralph Bellamy, Dan O'Herlihy, and John Anderson do the part before Murray, he comes off poor in comparison.

What struck me also about the film was this was a meeting of two men who overcame handicaps. George VI with his speech impediment and FDR with infantile paralysis. Both those stories are told in better films like The King's Speech and Sunrise At Campobello. A little note taking was done by both in their meeting.

Hyde Park On Hudson is a good enough film, but the stories of both principals have been better told elsewhere.

Reviewed by SnoopyStyle6 / 10

Forget the presidential affair, see it for the Royals

It's 1939 at a pivotal time of WWII. England is alone in the world confronting Hitler. They desperately need help from America, and the Royals arrive for a charm offensive. On their first stop, they visit FDR at his summer retreat in upstate NY.

Bill Murray is FDR, Laura Linney is cousin Daisy, and the Royals are played by Samuel West and Olivia Colman. There is little tension in the main storyline of FDR and his affair. And there's really no mystery. If this was only about them, this would be a horribly boring movie.

The most compelling part of the story is the Royal visit. They're funny but you can also feel the intense drama playing out. The desperation and the culture clash leads to some of the best moments of this movie. I wish that they had concentrated more on that instead. A presidential affair is just so much less compelling.

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