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That Hamilton Woman (1941)

Not Rated | | Drama, History, Romance | 30 April 1941 (USA)
The story of courtesan and dance-hall girl Emma Hamilton, including her relationships with Sir William Hamilton and Admiral Horatio Nelson and her rise and fall, set during the Napoleonic Wars.

Director:

Alexander Korda

Writers:

Walter Reisch (original screenplay), R.C. Sherriff (original screenplay)
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vivien Leigh ... Emma Lady Hamilton
Laurence Olivier ... Lord Horatio Nelson
Alan Mowbray ... Sir William Hamilton
Sara Allgood ... Mrs. Cadogan-Lyon
Gladys Cooper ... Lady Frances Nelson
Henry Wilcoxon ... Captain Hardy
Heather Angel ... A Streetgirl
Halliwell Hobbes ... Rev. Nelson
Gilbert Emery ... Lord Spencer
Miles Mander ... Lord Keith
Ronald Sinclair ... Josiah
Luis Alberni ... King of Naples
Norma Drury ... Queen of Naples
Olaf Hytten Olaf Hytten ... Gavin
Juliette Compton ... Lady Spencer
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Storyline

Sir William Hamilton, a widower of mature years, is British ambassador to the Court of Naples. Emma, who comes for a visit with her mother, wouldn't cut the grade with London society, but she gets along well with the Queen of Naples. Emma likes being Lady Hamilton, and life goes smoothly until Lord Nelson pays a visit. Sir William decides at first to let his young wife have her fling, and pretends not to know what is going on. But the real-life lovers, whose first screen romance was in Fire Over England (1937) have an even more burning passion for each other in this movie. Written by Dale O'Connor <daleoc@interaccess.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Year's Most Exciting Team of Screen Lovers !

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | Italian

Release Date:

30 April 1941 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

That Hamilton Woman See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Alexander Korda Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the first foreign film distributed in Russia during the war. See more »

Goofs

When Captain Hardy tells Lady Hamilton about Nelson's death, nearly all the details of the combat are wrong. Hardy says they were fighting the French flagship Redoutable, after approaching under heavy fog. He also says Nelson died at sunset. Actually, the French flagship was the Bucentaure, not the Redoutable, and the heavy fog had cleared since the morning. Also, Nelson was pronounced dead by 16:30, not sunset. Moreover, during the battle scenes, several ships can be seen exploding. In reality, only one ship, the French 74 gunner Achilles, blew up. See more »

Quotes

Lord Horatio Nelson: Gentlemen, you will never make peace with Napoleon! Napoleon cannot be master of the world until he has smashed us up, and believe me, gentlemen, he means to be master of the world! You cannot make peace with dictators. You have to destroy them, wipe them out!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Great Balls of Fire! (1989) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A haunting beauty whose fate is entwined with a craggy sea warrior
9 September 2001 | by lora64See all my reviews

I recall seeing this film when I was very young and felt sad about it. Now that I'm almost very old I still find it fascinating to watch. It seemed strange how Emma (Vivien Leigh) could rise to such prominence in life to become a Lady Hamilton and eventually fall so low, yes and sadly.

The movie begins at the lower rung, in her later life as she's caught stealing and put in prison where she recounts her story to others. We are taken back in time to her youth and arrival in Italy where, after some thoughtful consideration of her situation in life, Emma agrees to marry the elderly Sir Hamilton, and rather enjoys her position as Lady Hamilton, a glittering socialite.

Events of Napoleonic wartime bring Lord Nelson (Laurence Olivier) into their sphere when in need of supplies and he also seeks to warn them. Yet it is Fate that draws these two, Lord Nelson and Lady Hamilton, together in one of the great love stories of their time. It is touching to note Emma's care and concern for Horatio when his health is needing attention. For years their bittersweet romance must struggle to blossom against the ill-will of public opinion.

Vivien Leigh never looked more beautiful and one can see more of the true person she was after setting aside her role in "Gone With the Wind." Laurence Olivier, an actor of many disguises, is well masked in the injuries that Lord Nelson sustained in battle. One can almost feel he is the victim of circumstances as he moves from battles to home front. I don't know that much about the real history or the current politics involved when the movie was made but I always regarded this film as one of the great love stories of the past.


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