Thursday, December 23, 2010

Review: The King's Speech

Grade: A+

The Duke of York, who is the son of King George V, has been plagued with a speech impediment all his life. Now that radio and TV broadcasts are becoming more of a necessity, He has been all but forced into speech therapy. After going to several different therapists, he is about to give up, until his wife discovers Lionel Logue, who seems to be a bit unorthodox but is convinced he can help the Prince. Reluctant at first, the Duke begins to go through many different and wild techniques that ultimately begin to slowly help his speech. Along the way, a close friendship is formed between the two. But when the King dies and his brother abdicates the throne, “Bertie” reluctantly assumes the position of King George VI, shortly before World War II breaks out. Now, with the help of Lionel Logue, he must find his voice in order to help lead his country through war.

I love movies like The King’s Speech. Movies that simply make you feel better after watching them. This movie is amazing, everything about it was just amazing. The writing was fantastic and the acting was superb, but I’ll get to that later. The King’s Speech is based on a true story, and a great one at that. It is loaded with so many wonderful moments, one of my personal favorites is when, the now, King George VI and his wife, Queen Elizabeth, go to visit Lionel at his house. Lionel’s wife is out when they start their session but she comes home early to find the Queen sitting at the table drinking tea. One of the funnier moments is when Lionel encourages Bertie to swear, because he doesn’t stammer when he swears. Not to mention watching King George VI give a very important national address at the end of the movie, awe inspiring. It was great to watch some of the characters and know what lies down the road for them. For instance his daughter Elizabeth, who is around 10 in the movie, goes on to be the current Queen of England. Winston Churchill pops up a couple times as well. This movie is just fantastic and is full of great moments and it was all extremely well written and shot, a truly beautiful movie.

Colin Firth (A Single Man, Love Actually) plays the lead role of Bertie, aka King George VI. He did an amazing job in this movie, the best performance of the year in my opinion. You really believed he had this speech impediment, he pulled it off flawlessly. The opening scene where he is attempting to give a speech at Wembley Stadium but he is struggling through it, is absolutely heart breaking. Helena Bonham Carter (Harry Potter, Alive in Wonderland) plays his wife, Queen Elizabeth. She was amazing in this movie as well and gave what is easily the best performance of her career. The subtleties of her performance were great and really brought a lot of emotion to the character. Geoffrey Rush (Pirates of the Caribbean, Elizabeth) plays Lionel Logue. Rush was fantastic in this role. He seemed to put a ton of heart into this performance and made the character extremely likeable. These three gave the best performances of the year, in my opinion. The movie also features great performances by Michael Gambon as King George V, Guy Pearce as King Edward VIII and Timothy Spall as Winston Churchill.

This movie is definitely one of the best movies of the year. I cannot recommend it enough. Please, go out and see this masterpiece of a movie, you won’t be disappointed. Like I said, I left his movie feeling great because it is a very touching and inspirational movie; it just makes you feel better. I loved The King’s Speech.

Great quote: “This family has been forced to become those lowest of creatures; we have become actors.”

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