Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The King's Speech - Movie Review

I normally try to not to use adjectives of either extremely high or low praise in these articles so as not to seem like an overblown advertisement or come off like a monster truck commercial. That being said the one word that comes to mind when I think of this movie is “brilliant”. The writing, the acting, the cinematography…everything about this film is so well done there’s no other fitting descriptive.

This is the story of the man who becomes King George VI and how he learns to cope with a debilitating speech impediment during a most historically significant time and also of the man who not only takes on the role of teacher/therapist but also becomes the closest of friends with the emerging king. The two parts are played by Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush respectively, both of whom bring a highly respected resume to their roles and do not disappoint in the least. Directed by Tom Hooper, and co-starring Helena Bonham carter and Guy Pearce, this film almost had no choice but to be at least good if not great.

That being said, I was still not quite sure what to expect as these types of period pieces can sometimes fall into the categories of slow, dull, and downright painful to watch. Little did I know that I would witness a movie that was at the same time as light-hearted and comical as it was serious in nature and the focus on the relationship between “Bertie” and Lionel would be the key to what makes the story a joy to watch unfold. From the opening scene, you feel for Colin Firth’s character and you are drawn in to the pain he feels and you can see the strength hiding behind that pain as it is trying to find a way out.

Geoffrey Rush’s portrayal of Lionel Loge is a great mix of the stern teacher that will accept nothing but his rule as law and a loving family man that cares deeply for those around him. He also brings a wit and sense of humor to the role that plays perfectly against the walls of fear that need to be brought down in the Duke of York before he can truly become the type of king that can deliver a speech that will inspire a nation and a world during a time of war.

For fear of moving too far over the line of this review becoming propaganda, I will just say in closing that The King’s Speech is an inspiring and uplifting movie that left me with a sense of true happiness as the credits began to role and also long after as I think back on not only the story and characters of the film, but the great performances given by everyone involved with making a movie good enough to deserve not only an Oscar for Best Picture, but also a place high on my list of favorite films of the year.

CLICK HERE to see my other favorite movies from 2010!

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