Nazi Germany is on the move, but everyone in 1940 Britain can rest easy. Winston Churchill is finally at the helm as prime minister.
If it were only that simple.
The courageous and resolute Churchill we’ve learned about in history books is certainly courageous and resolute in Darkest Hour (PG-13) – a biographical movie now in theaters – but he has few supporters.
“We have a drunkard at the wheel,” says one members of Parliament.
“I wouldn’t let him borrow my bicycle,” says another.
Even King George VI doesn’t trust Churchill, instead supporting his rivals, including predecessor Neville Chamberlain.
“Winston lacks judgment,” the king says.
The fretting is no small matter. Hitler has conquered most of Western Europe and is on the verge of occupying France. Britain likely is next. As we learn in Darkest Hour, Chamberlain and a handful of powerful MPs – all members of Churchill’s own party – are plotting to remove him from power. Their goal: Sign another peace agreement with Hitler and hope for the best. Churchill, though, is determined to go down fighting – even though his entire army is surrounded on the beaches of Dunkirk, France.
“You cannot reason with a tiger when your head is in its mouth!” he tells his own party.
Darkest Hour stars Gary Oldman (The Dark Knight) as Churchill; Kristin Scott Thomas (Four Weddings and a Funeral) as his wife, Clemmie; Ben Mendelsohn (Rogue One, The Dark Knight Rises) as King George VI; and Lily James (Cinderella, Downton Abbey) as Churchill’s young secretary, Elizabeth Layton.
Here is what parents should know:
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