OK for kids 16+
Presidential drama is well acted but short on passion.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Hyde Park on Hudson is a light period drama focusing on a fateful weekend when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (Bill Murray) played host to the king and queen of England. Against a rich backdrop of pre-World War II history, an infatuation develops between the president and his distant cousin, Margaret Stuckley (Laura Linney). The movie offers a decidedly intimate portrayal of the president, following him into his bedroom. One fairly sexual scene takes place in a car; nothing graphic is shown, but movements and gestures imply that a woman is using her hand to pleasure a man. A naked woman is also seen in the background of another scene (fuzzily), and there's also some swearing and plenty of period-accurate smoking and drinking.
- Families can talk about how Hyde Park on Hudson portrays Roosevelt. How does it compare to the FDR we usually see in movies and TV shows? Which do you think is a more accurate depiction? Why do filmmakers sometimes take liberties with history?
- Is it challenging to view a beloved president in this light? Or does Hyde Park on Hudson do a good job of humanizing him, even if it means knocking him off the proverbial pedestal?
- Why is Daisy drawn to FDR, and vice versa? How does the film portray Eleanor Roosevelt and her reaction to Daisy?
The good stuff
Messages: Men and women of greatness are human, too -- with their own foibles and failings. So perhaps it's best not to lionize them, but to appreciate what they bring to the table without losing sight of their humanity.
Role models: Daisy is loyal and true to FDR from the start. She's genuinely interested in him as a person, not as the president of the United States. Still, he is a married man, and both of them are culpable in how they act on their attraction to each other.
What to watch for
Violence: A little yelling.
Sex: One scene shows a couple in a car -- it's strongly implied that she's using her hand to pleasure him. Viewers don't see much more than their faces and the backs of their heads, though there's bouncy movement that hints at what's happening. Later, characters discuss one person's rampant infidelity and speculate about another's sexuality. In the background of one scene, a naked woman is seen (fuzzily and from somewhat of a distance).
Language: Relatively infrequent language includes "damn," "hell," "son of a bitch," "whore," "oh my God," and "goddamn."
Consumerism: Not an issue
Drinking, drugs and smoking: Lots of era-accurate smoking. Some characters also drink cocktails to relax, though they bear the brunt of another person's disapproval for doing so.
Fan Reviews provided by
A Welll Acted and Directed Slice of History by jzactor
The story being told in Hyde Park on the Hudson is very simple. President Franklin D Roosevelt invited the King and Queen of England to the president's personal resort to rest and relax and meet regarding the looming war in Europe. The story does deal with the matter at hand and with much more, which makes this film unique and very worthwhile.
The acting is very good, the direction is pitch perfect and the story is simple. It all about the gathering which involves the personal struggles of each person, including President Roosevelt and his wife, the King and Queen of England and President Roosevelt's paramour, played very well by Laura Linney. The story is fascinating as the world prepares to see the King and Queen actually eat hot dogs while the president juggles his relationship with his wife and his mistress. The direction never gets too ponderous. The deepest moments of drama are juxtaposed with the lighter moments as all munch on hot dogs while the world reacts.
Slow-Paced but Memorable & Worth a Look by ArtHistory2004
I enjoyed this film for what it was. We get a sneak peek at a great President and his surroundings during one of the most tumultuous moments in American History. Just as most encounters with the President are short and memorable, this film is also.
In just over an hour and a half, a handful of actors successfully capture the complicated spirit of FDR, Daisy Suckley, Eleanor Roosevelt, King George VI, and Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Mother). The set design and cinematography are spellbinding and, while I originally thought the writing needed improvement because of the slow pacing, upon reflection it seems accurate for the less hurried 1930's.
I doubt that Bill Murray wins Best Actor for what the Golden Globes consider a Comedy (Bradley Cooper and Hugh Jackman seem more likely to win the category) but, nonetheless, this film was worth the time and price of admission.
Poor attempt by 197ravenhill
The setting was great. The atmosphere of the 30's was well created BUT the characters were disappointing. My father was an English gentleman and I spent my first 2 decades in British Isles so I know that king George 6th was a slight, very thin man with hollow checks and not at all like the actor portraying him. Also Queen Elizabeth, while she may have been sharp and critical in private, always presented a soft cuddly demeanor and was nothing at all like the ugly, unpleasant character depicted in the film. Further, Bill Murray's portrayal of FDR was a very sad attempt compared to Ralph Bellamy's great one in Winds of War. I would not see this movie again, nor would I recommend it to anyone.
Hugely Disappointing by UpperWestSider1
Thumbs up on the locations, sets and costumes, but thumbs down on everything else. The lead characters -- FDR, Eleanor, the King & Queen, and, yes, Daisy -- are presented as such dim wits. Come on folks, they were the leaders of their countries!
hyde park on hudson by carolnemo
I found this film enjoyable for the most part, and the acting exceptional, especially by Bill Murray and Laura Linney.
I was disappointed that at Hyde Park, one of the most beautiful spots in the state of new york, there was not a single scene of the mighty Hudson River and the lush green hills on both sides of the river, and too much emphasis on the vast fields on the property. perhaps it was not even filmed at Hyde Park.
also disappointing to me was the emphasis on only 2 aspects of FDR's nearly 3 terms in office: the sexual needs and narcissistic aspect of FDR's personality, and the king and queens' visit. Surely, there were many more interesting anecdotes that could have been highlighted. The movie was only 1 hr, 34 min., and another 20 minutes could have shown other sides of FDR and his presidency.
i would not recommend this movie for children under 15..
Hyde Park on the Hudson by Smitty615
I was disappointed. The characters for the most part were almost caricatures of the people they were portraying, and if the viewer knows ANYTHING about the Roosevelts and King George and Queen Elizabeth, it would be hard to believe this story the way it is presented. I cannot recommend tis film.
Dull by jomeyertons
First, the movie is rather dull. Second, it involves a rather excruciating humiliation by an important president to women who had little or no power in their dull lives. I could have lived without seeing that. Bill Murray is a good actor but I just don't like this character. I'd say this one should go on the large heap of films better forgotten.
One bright note: FDR's car had a really cool cigarette dispenser/lighter.
In a word... gross! by newyorkminute
Wish I never even heard of this movie. I went to see Bill Murray. I can't even say what I thought of the acting because the script and the whole story was so offensive. Several people left the theatre during the movie. I haven't seen that happen in a long time.
Justme by dumble
Engaging film. Enjoyed the entire film. Bill Murray is excellent in the role of FDR. This seems to be the year of the President...elections in November followed by two short looks into the lives of FDR and Lincoln.
This President was not perfect and this shows an imperfect side to FDR. It also shows compassion to the King of England, as a young inexperienced ruler, who comes to the Power asking for support. This is a very touching moment in the film.
A go see or rent for home. This film should win awards.
Boring and Creepy by johnuws
Most of the time it's the voiceover that drones on and on about the most obvious things that you're already watching. The worst bit was watching FDR getting a hand job from his cousin. Totally gross and awkward.
Poorly written and directed.