Saturday, 15 January 2011

The King's Speech - Review

I have long awaited the release of this movie, ever since I found out about it in October. I cannot tell you how many times I have longingly watched the trailer. Saddo.

I am a lover of royal history, so to see a practically unknown story told on the big screen is something that excited me muchous **

Colin Firth plays Kings George VI

Firth is flawless as Bertie, soon to be George VI. But I shall be honest. I was not expecting to be as swept up in this story as much as I was. I am not a fan of Colin Firth. Actually, that's a bit of a fib. A whopper in fact. I am not a fan of Bridget Jone's Diary (gasp!) and this is all my feeble mind associated him with.

I didn't think he was a very deep actor. A bit wooden. I was so very, very, VERY wrong. And a bit of a knobber for not looking past a 2 film deal and further into his extensive career. I am now going to do just that.

Helena Bonham-Carter plays Elizabeth Bowes-Lyons.

Helena Bonham-Carter. What can I say? What is there to say? As a huge fan of all her work, each scene with her was a delight. And she endeared me to find out more about the dear old Queen Mum.

I have heard whispers that she was a bit of a cantankerous old moo. But it would seem with due reason. She was a pillar of strength for her husband through his stammer and the bullying he suffered at the hands of the alpha's of the family.

A constant support for the Prince who was not meant to be King.

Geoffrey Rush plays Lionel Logue

And one of the ways she supported her husband was to carry on when he has ceased to care about the stutter he has developed. She sourced Lionel Logue, an unconventional Australian speech therapist, to help him when he believed himself to be beyond it.

Geoffrey Rush is monumental in this role. I loved every minute of watching him bring this footnote of history to life.

It is not really a fashion movie, not for us lasses anyway. But, it is wonderful in other ways for a history girl such as myself, with a keen eye for detail.

The fact that Queen Mary makes a regal and stately appearance, for example. Wallace Simpson, who seems to adequately slide and slither her way across the screen. A harrowed looking Neville Chamberlain and a bold Winston Churchill, made up for the lack of frocks.

I found out that having suffered from a stammer himself as a child and listening to King George VI on the radio, the writer David Seidler investigated how this seemed to all but disappear. Research in hand, he had to ask permission of the Queen Mother, who requested that it not be written in her lifetime as the memories remained too painful. This was duly respected.

The result of his exploration is a heartwarming, uplifting, anger inducing, tear jerker, laugh out loud movie.

I am beyond pleased that David Seidler followed his dream to write this story. He has given a historical treat to us all that otherwise would have remained untold.

A top drawer 10 out of 10 from me.

** -  what did not excite me was the fact that whole way through the movie a young girlfriend was asking her older boyfriend what was going on. And who was who. Namely "Who is Winston Churchill?". My brain could not compute. And my right eye started to twitch. I didn't know if I wanted to hit her or cry. In the end I decided that, should the opportunity arise, I would congratulate the boyfriend on his patient, whispered knowledge, as he knew his stuff. And then I would hit her. With a history book.


  1. I thought it was a tremendous film and if Mr Firth doesn't get an Oscar for it, I'll find a trilby and eat it. I can understand what you mean about him...I didn't like Bridget Jones or Love Actually, but I did like him. If you haven't done, have a look at Another Country with him and Rupert Everett. It's brilliant.
    Also, he's a local boy and we all have a soft spot for him here..especially my mate who used to go out with him when they were at college!

  2. great review honey... I must go this week :D xx

  3. I did wonder where the source of the film was, and how accurate it was, so lovely to know that it has some input from the late Maj's Ma.

    I am not the least bit surprised by the young girl in the audience. Some surveying was done a few years ago and half of them didn't know who the PM of the time, Tony Blair, was...

  4. i really wanted to see this film. i love geoffrey rush, helen and colin. three of my favourites. my family and i were going to go see it but it was sold out. i hate how its got limited viewing!

  5. Welcome Frankly - That sucks! It is sure to be out on DVD inside of 3 months - so you will not have long to wait- depending on how long it is on at the flicks for in your area :)
    Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  6. Loved the film.

    My Granddad hated the Queen Mother with a passion, my you should have heard him when she came on the TV! lol Very fond of the King though(he did one tour on the royal yacht when he was in the navy.)
    I think she was exactly the right kind of woman to have been Queen in war time.

  7. Think I'm in a minority here LG - I thought it was unbelievable, aimed at the US market, Royalty-Lite. I know some poetic licence has to be taken in every film but to me it was really ludicrous. Seemed to me as if the whole point was to make out that underneath the Royals are 'just like us'. Well, no...they're not. You only have to remember the uproar in the media a couple years back when the Prime Minister of Australia touched the Queen's back to guide her somewhere, whilst she was there on tour, to realise that if that's the reaction in the 21st century, what would it be like in the 30s? The only part that rang true for me was when Colin Firth turned on Logue in the scene in the park.
    And yes, I am reading your blog from the start and commenting as I go like so many things that I do!!!

    K xx

  8. Hey Keshling - thanks for commenting. Going to have to agree to disagree here I'm afraid. I believe George VI to be markedly different from the rest & from what I have read, that seems to be the case. Touching the Queen in public in Oz & working with George VI to try and cure a stutter in private cannot be compared. I thought the film was not geared towards the US market at all. The only bit I didnt find believable was Churchill - but I can over look that!

    But each to their own! Fab to have another opinion on board!


I'd love to hear what you think so feel free to comment away!


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