Part of Weekend Classics: Katharine Hepburn.
It’s Christmas Court in 1183. King Henry II (Peter O’Toole) argues with his estranged wife, Eleanor (Katharine Hepburn) over whether their youngest son Prince John (Nigel Terry) or eldest Richard the Lionheart (Anthony Hopkins in his film debut) shall inherit the throne. Complicating matters is King Philip II of France (Timothy Dalton, also his debut) who seeks his own fortune by demanding that his half-sister Alais (Jane Merrow), currently Henry’s mistress, be betrothed to Richard. Hepburn’s performance earned her the Oscar for Best Actress in 1969, alongside awards for Screenplay and Score, and nominations for O’Toole as well as Best Picture. The most royal of the cycle of 60s films dealing with the history and palace intrigues of medieval England, THE LION IN WINTER returns in a new 4K restoration from Studiocanal and Rialto Pictures.
“...Savage catfights, drippy suitors, a fruity Peter O’Toole, even a proto-BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN moment. What more could one ask for?” —Alex von Tunzelmann, The Guardian “One of the joys which movies provide too rarely is the opportunity to see a literate script handled intelligently. THE LION IN WINTER triumphs at that difficult task.”—Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times (1968) “...All that’s ever mattered about THE LION IN WINTER are Hepburn and O’Toole, and the pleasure we take from watching two masters inspire each other to greatness. Scenery chewing has rarely been so artful.” —Chuck Wilson, Village Voice