The King’s Speech Movie Review

January 3, 2011

The King’s Speech Movie Review

I wasn’t expecting much from The King’s Speech but on New Year’s Day I wasn’t in the mood for much more than relaxing somewhere with air conditioning. What a pleasant surprise then to really enjoy this lovely little British flick about the pre-war Royals with a stellar cast to boot.

To be honest I can’t really keep track of the Royals – I need a family tree anytime there’s a mention of a King of Queen before Elizabeth II, and this is a fabulous history lesson from King George V to World War II, complete with corgies and Churchill.

The King’s Speech is the true story of King George V’s son Albert (Colin Firth) whose stammer causes him much embarrassment, especially during public speaking. His wife Elizabeth (Helena Bonham Carter) seeks out speech therapists without any success, until she stumbles upon Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush), an Australian speech therapist with unconventional methods. He refuses to address Albert as a Royal, instead calling him Bertie and soon getting to the causes of his speech impediment, but not without some turbulence along the way.

It’s a very touching tale of friendship played against the backdrop of fractious Royal pre-war history. Wallis Simpson, anyone? Guy Pearce plays Bertie’s brother King Edward VIII (and surprisingly really looks like him!), besotted with that American divorcee who abandons his commitment to the throne, forcing Bertie to become King. And with World War II brewing, Bertie, now King George VI, has to deliver a speech to inspire his people and prove to himself that he’s a worthy successor to title of King.

The film has all the markings of a great British film: beautiful dialogue, earthy colours, rich interiors; and every one of the cast is amazing. The King’s Speech makes the perfect rainy day/Sunday afternoon movie – and I guarantee you’ll leave an expert on the Royal family tree.

Have you see The King’s Speech? Let us know what you thought!

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