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The Woman He Loved (1988)

The love story between American divorcee Wallis Simpson and Edward VIII, that ended in his abdication for the woman he loved.

Director:

Charles Jarrott

Writer:

William Luce
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Anthony Andrews ... Prince of Wales
Jane Seymour ... Wallis Simpson
Olivia de Havilland ... Aunt Bessie Merryman
Lucy Gutteridge ... Thelma
Tom Wilkinson ... Ernest Simpson
Julie Harris ... Alice
Robert Hardy ... Winston Churchill
Phyllis Calvert ... Queen Mary
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mona Bruce Mona Bruce ... Mrs. Baldwin
Richenda Carey ... Maud Kerr-Smiley
Elizabeth Counsell ... Katherine Rogers
Susan Denaker ... Connie Thaw
Rupert Frazer Rupert Frazer ... Lord Perry Brownlow
Peter Graves ... Lord Reith
John Horsley ... Justice Sir John Hawke
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Storyline

The love story between American divorcee Wallis Simpson and Edward VIII, that ended in his abdication for the woman he loved.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 April 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Mulher que Ele Amou See more »

Filming Locations:

France See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Towards the end Edward recites the poem "If I were king..." from Justin Huntly McCarthy's 1901 novel and play of that name filmed in 1938. Although these recount the life of medieval French poet Francois Villon, the poem is McCarthy's creation. See more »

Goofs

In one funeral flashback set in 1972, the coffin is carried in with the Duke of Windsor's flag, but the trumpeters have the "GR" cipher of George V, last used in 1936. See more »

Quotes

Wallis Simpson: I hope it doesn't rain and spoil everything.
Prince of Wales: I thought you like the rain.
Wallis Simpson: I was lying.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: Bart the Murderer (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Reveille
(uncredited)
Traditional
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Excellent rendition, beautifully photographed, and lifelike.
29 April 2008 | by CamargueSee all my reviews

As a devotee of the lives and times of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, this is, by far, my favorite rendition of these people and their times.

It is beautifully photographed, and competently acted. Specifically, it is not overly dramatic, because the drama was in the situation, not in anyone's dramatized reaction.

"The Woman He Loved" begins as Wallis and Ernest Simpson take up lush lodgings in London. As they negotiate their way into London society, by ingratiating themselves into the upper echelons, it is inevitable that they meet the Prince of Wales, David Windsor, who is destined to be crowned King Edward VIII. Much to the shock of his immediate (and intimate) circle, Wallis becomes the only person outside of his family to address him as "David." The future king is at a loss at how to react, but cannot bring himself to correct her. She appears to be candid, and spontaneous; a typical American, yet her actions are studied and cunning. He is both intrigued and amused, and his lack of restraint provides encouragement so that she behaves even more brazenly. The relationship between Wallis and the future king is filled with anecdotes of personal affection, and times of great tribulation as their relationship deepens to become the infamous 'romance of the century.'

Anthony Andrews IS David Windsor, shy, slight, elite, precise, sympathetic, empathetic, yet equally out-of-touch. Somehow, he is emboldened to speak on social issues, while exhibiting disastrous judgment. Equally well matched, Jane Seymour perfectly captures the all consuming, calculating and ambitious personality of Wallis Warfield Spencer Simpson. Cold, yet charming, demanding yet vulnerable, and always persnickety, Wallis Simpson was a force of nature. How else could a twice-divorced, not particularly beautiful, American commoner, bring the King of England to his knees?

Olivia de Havilland is perfect as Aunt Bessie. She assumes a vital role in the development of their relationship. In essence, she took the place of an entire royal court for Wallis' side; and she was up to the task.

In a world where, in spite of their advantages, David and Wallis felt they did not belong, they found each other. No one can estimate the change in the quality of life when people find "the rest of themselves" but this is what appears to have happened when they met and married. Wallis addressed him as David (in private) but she used his royal appellation of Edward as a design element, to form their initials into "WE." They truly painted themselves as the two of them (WE) against the world.

The personal story of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor is not just a love story; it is a story for the ages. For centuries, men have waged wars to become Kings of England; this man willingly walked away and gave up Throne and Sceptre, Crown and Country, because it was the only way he could marry the woman he loved.


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