Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Movie of the Week: The King's Speech

H.M. King George VI of the United Kingdom.Image via Wikipedia
Last week the Spotlight Movie Club included The King's Speech, which we had been waiting to see.  We had been hearing a lot about it, since it was nominated for 12 Academy Awards.

About the movie:
After the death of his father King George V (Michael Gambon) and the scandalous abdication of King Edward VIII (Guy Pearce), Bertie (Colin Firth) who has suffered from a debilitating speech impediment all his life, is suddenly crowned King George VI of England. With his country on the brink of war and in desperate need of a leader, his wife, Elizabeth (Helena Bonham Carter), the future Queen Mother, arranges for her husband to see an eccentric speech therapist, Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush). After a rough start, the two delve into an unorthodox course of treatment and eventually form an unbreakable bond. With the support of Logue, his family, his government and Winston Churchill (Timothy Spall), the King will overcome his stammer and deliver a radio-address that inspires his people and unites them in battle.

Based on the true story of King George VI, THE KING'S SPEECH follows the Royal Monarch's quest to find his voice.

Sometimes the movies that get all the attention and hype are a real disappointment - not this one.  This was a really wonderful movie.  We enjoyed it thoroughly, from beginning to end.  I was aware of the abdication of King Edward VIII but did not know the story of his brother's struggle to become the king the country needed him to be.  Or if I learned it at all, I had forgotten.  If only all history could be taught this way!

Colin Firth was absolutely amazing as Bertie (King George VI).  Amazing!  His speech impediment was very believable as well as his struggle to overcome his childhood issues and become the man he was meant to be and the king his country needed him to be.  Helena Bonham Carter as his wife Elizabeth was loving and strong, and also had to come to terms with the fact that she and Bertie would no longer be allowed to live a relatively private life.  Geoffrey Rush was wonderful in his role as Lionel.

We left the theater understanding why this movie has received all the attention it has.  If you haven't seen it yet - do!
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