Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Movie of the week - The King's Speech

This is a great movie. A movie that lives by story and character alone. Not a car chase, special effect, explosion, or clever plot twist to be seen.Colin Firth (who I confuse with Colin Farrel, simply because they have the same first name) plays Bertie, the future King George VI of England. He's got a problem, you see, he stammers. That's a bad enough problem for anybody, but when you're the Duke of York, and the second heir to the throne, it poses particular problems. Especially in the early 1930s, when a king, as Bertie's father explains, has to perform on the wireless like some actor.

Helen Bonham Carter plays his wife, the future Queen Mother, Elizabeth. My view of Carter has seriously deteriorated over the years because of her recurring Harry Potter role. I'd forgotten what a fine actress she is.

After years of speech therapist charlatans, Bertie has had it and is resigned to his fate. He'll never be king anyway. His father is healthy and his older brother is the direct heir. But Elizabeth convinces him to give it one last try with an unorthodox therapist named Lionel Logue (played with just the right amount of enthusiasm by Geoffrey Rush).

But then old King George V dies and brother David becomes King Edward VIII. You may remember some bother about him abdicating the throne. Bertie becomes King George VI and has to lead his people into war. He has the know how, but not the confidence. And there's that damn stammer.

I highly recommend this movie. I think it's one of the best movies from 2010 that we saw.

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