Following the death of his father, the youthful Prince Hal is crowned King Henry V (although every one calls him Harry) and takes the throne of England. He is determined to prove his right to rule in England and in France. An ambassador arrives from the French King with a rather odd gift of tennis balls. This gift, an insulting comment about Harry’s not very serious behavior before he became king, causes Harry to respond with force. He and his troops prepare to invade France. While preparing, three of Harry’s friends, Scroop, Cambridge and Grey, are discovered to be plotting to kill the King and he condemns them to death. Pistol, Nym, and Bardolph, the companions of Harry’s earlier days, join the English forces and set off for the war after hearing of the death of their (and Harry’s) old friend, Sir John Falstaff.
Harry gives the French one more chance to recognize him as their king. When the French refuse, Harry and his troops begin their invasion. Harry wins an initial battle at Harfleur, and then the two armies prepare for a major battle near Agincourt. The French outnumber the English forces 5-to-1. The night before the battle Harry visits his troops in disguise to see how they are feeling. The next morning Harry inspires his troops with a powerful speech. The battle begins and Harry leads his troops to an incredible underdog victory. The French suffer heavy loss of life, whereas the English losses are light. Harry makes peace with the French king. He then wins the heart of the French Princess Katharine and their marriage links England and France.