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Plot: Tells the story of the man who became King George VI, the father of Queen Elizabeth II. After his brother abdicates, George ('Bertie') reluctantly assumes the throne. Plagued by a dreaded stammer and considered unfit to be king, Bertie engages the help of an unorthodox speech therapist named Lionel Logue. Through a set of unexpected techniques, and as a result of an unlikely friendship, Bertie is able to find his voice and boldly lead the country through war. Runtime: 118 mins Release Date: 23 Dec 2010
This is a biopic about how King George VI, the father of Queen Elizabeth II, overcame his stuttering problem. Widely considered by all but his father unfit to be king, George is reluctantly thrust unto the throne and into the spotlight after his brother is forced to abdicate. Overshadowed on the global stage by powerful orators like Adolph Hitler and Benito Mussolini, the King relies on the help of a little-known Australian speech therapist named Lionel Logue to find his voice and courageously lead his people into the most devastating war humanity has ever faced.This is a powerful, hilarious <more>
and deeply moving story, told against the backdrop of a critical juncture in modern history, of the emergence of a deep friendship out of a professional relationship between two men who would otherwise never have socially interacted. The screenplay, written by David Seidler who also wrote Tucker: The Man and his Dream , is excellent. The dry British wit is hilarious. I was literally slapping my knee during some of the scenes. Tom Hooper Elizabeth I does a superb job directing this movie. The buildup to the climactic finale is skillfully executed and prompted the audience to erupt into spontaneous applause. Apparently, this also happened at the Roy Thomson Hall premiere. Geoffrey Rush Elizabeth: The Golden Age does a fantastic job as Lionel Logue and Colin Firth A Single Man is excellent as King George VI.I saw the second public screening of this movie at the Ryerson Theater during the Toronto International Film Festival TIFF . Tom Hooper was present to introduce the movie. He was joined by Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush after the movie ended for a brief Q&A.It turns out that David Seidler also had a stuttering problem as a child and drew inspiration from the king's struggle. Early in his career he wanted to write a screenplay about it. He dutifully asked the Queen Mother for permission. She agreed but told him "not in my lifetime". Little did he know she would live to be 101 and he would have to wait another 30 years.Another interesting tidbit we learned was that near the end of the shoot, the crew finally located one of Lionel Logue's grandsons, who just so happened to live about 10 minutes away from the director. They got access to Lionel's diaries and correspondence and managed to incorporate some of it into the script.This movie is an unqualified must see.
Superb drama of courage and humanity (by Colinrocks)
I think I must have seen a different film from the previous two reviewers at Leeds on Friday. It is now two days ago and I am still feeling overwhelmed by what I saw. It is a very touching, and quite inspiring story about a man, psychologically scarred, and trapped in a situation from which he could have no escape and facing it with immense courage. It so happens that he was royal, and that was a large part of his problem- but the film isn't so much about royalty as a human story. The film conveyed very powerfully in the opening scene, the enormity of what was required of him. As the film <more>
develops, the complexities of the character are revealed. The acting is superb, especially from the three principals, and the development of the troubled and sparky relationship at the heart of the film is a joy to watch. The film is very funny and the characters have warmth and humanity. The film is well paced, and carries you along to the emotional climax, so that, even though I knew the story, it had me holding my breath. If you don't need lots of action or special effects in your film, and enjoy seeing top-notch actors at the very peak of their craft, this will be for you. You might also, as I did, gain a bit more insight into the human drama behind a significant, but relatively unexplored period of British history.If CF and GR both win Oscars they will be more than worthy winners and if they don't then "best" has no meaning. One further thought- anyone who thinks that this film is unsuitable for teenage viewers needs to have a long hard look at their priorities. It could prove inspirational to anyone with communication difficulties.
No spoilers here. I would like to let everyone know that this is an excellent film. I enjoyed it this week at the Mill Valley Film Festival in Marin County, CA. Given the outstanding cast and director, and my fascination with historical figures, I had high hopes for this film, though mixed with a certain resignation that I might be disappointed. There was no way I could have imagined how wonderful "The King's Speech" would be. There was abundant humor without the film ever becoming a comedy, drama without dreariness, and many deeply moving moments. I can't praise this film <more>
enough. It boosted my appreciation of the human capacity to become our best selves, and rise to meet even the most daunting challenges.
What a wonderful performance! Compassion and clarity of vision, side by side. Colin Firth has been a favourite of mine since the extraordinary "Apartment Zero' 1989 His maturity as an actor reflects his maturity as a person and how many times are we able to say that? Very few I'm afraid. What I thought I saw in him as an actor playing the zero of the title in "Apartment Zero" is here in spades. Wow! How rewarding! Here he's not alone. Goeffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter and Guy Pearce are all standouts and the stutter is just a device to show a whole picture. How <more>
strange we knew so little about this man. I guess Hitler got all the headlines. So from a historical perspective is also a feast of sorts. Bravo indeed!
King George VI Stutters with Laughs, Giggles and Touching Moments at the Toronto International Film Festival (by Jamester)
Wow! I just saw this at the Roy Thompson Hall TIFF World premiere of The King's Speech with director Tom Hooper great job , Colin Firth great , Geoffrey Rush outstanding , and the writer excellent job! present. Front row seating was actually really good.Let me frame this for you: this is a biopic of shy and stuttering King George VI in the years leading up to WWII. I didn't know he stuttered. And had a speech therapist. Interestingly, the screenplay writer wasn't allowed to put this on until the former Queen passed. "Not in my lifetime," she said. And so he waited <more>
30 years to pass until he could. He was a former stutterer who said to himself, if King George VI could get over his stuttering, then so could I. And hence goes the story of overcoming this major issue which has emotional and not merely physical roots while connecting with his speech helper.The movie zones in on not only the stutter and magnifies the power and lack of power that the spoken word communicates all subtext , but makes the story very human, and interesting as the film focuses on the King and Lionel Logue, his 'speech defects' therapist, for lack of a better and more accurate term.The movie flowed well with good story and excellent acting throughout that captured my attention and rewarded it with some funny and very honest moments sprinkled throughout.Geoffrey Rush was outstanding in playing a common man using his mind and full creative abilities to solve a man's stutter enough to deliver powerful speeches to resist during WWII.The funniest moment, I shall not reveal, but it has to do with how speech anti-stutter techniques were used. So creative. And honest. AND so funny.After one key speech, the audience in Roy Thompson Hall spontaneously started clapping. WOW! This was a nice movie. It could have pushed the emotional bar just a bit higher, but nonetheless stuck to its guns and gave an honest and good time. A strong 9/10.
After seeing "Apartment Zero" and being bowled over again by his amazing performance as the Argentinean pretending to be British, I felt the urge to see "The King's Speech" again - So glad I did. It was very moving to see Adrian Leduc being George VI. What an astonishing actor. In Apartment Zero he creates a character without a personality. A repressed, innocent that comes out as a total weirdo but we know better. His undeclared needs reflected in Colin Firth's eyes are a prodigious acting feast. In The King's Speech, his George VI suffers from a different fear <more>
but it's also pungently clear in the actor's eyes. I think what they both share is a desperate wish to be invisible. For King George that's an impossibility so, his struggle to move forward, learning to be the man everyone expects him to be is enormously moving. As you may have guessed, Colin Firth has become one of my favorite actors of all time.
There were a lot of elderly folks in the theatre when I saw The King's Speech. It occurred to me that some of them may have been alive when George VI gave the actual speech to the British Nation which had just declared war with Hitler.The King's Speech is a feel good movie, but a very adult one, and while it tells a good story, well scripted, absorbing and believable except for an odd line or two , Tom Hooper's film is far more driven by character than by plot.You may need to see it to believe it but, Colin Firth has no obvious competition for the best actor awards which are <more>
coming his way. He is absorbed in the role of the stammering king who is timid, low in self-confidence, and frustrated but perfectly warm-hearted. The only time he doesn't stammer is oddly enough when he curses. This is something which his new speech therapist suggests he use as a practise tool in the one scene which earned the film an R rating. The King's Speech is arguably a proud moment for Geoffrey Rush as well. This is him at his best, and he and Firth together almost make the movie. Their exchange of dialogue is flawless. The King's Speech boasts an exceptional cast, which includes Helena Bonham Carter, Michael Gambon, Derek Jacobi and Guy Pearce, all of whom help contribute to the picture with the smallest amount of screen time.The King's Speech says a mouthful, and it warms the heart without question. There is also no question is arguing that it is among the very best of the year.
54th BFI London Film Festival - Excellent Film (by shanekester)
This year at the BFI London Film Festival, one of my favorite films was The King's Speech. It's the story of King George VI Colin Firth and his reluctant rise to become the King of England after his brother King Edward the VIII Guy Pearce abdicates the throne to marry the twice divorced Wallis Simpson . It's a great story of an unlikely and hesitant hero who suffers with a debilitating stammer. Seeking the help of an unorthodox speech therapist, Lionel Logue Geoffrey Rush endeavors to help the then Prince of York with his ever increasing responsibilities of delivering live <more>
speeches over the radio. Colin Firth delivers an extremely convincing performance with stammers and pregnant pauses during his public and radio speeches that come across as genuinely painful to watch. His loving and supportive wife Elizabeth Helena Bonham Carter stands by his side with encouragement as the looming pressure of becoming King and the need to vocally address his people only exacerbate the stammering problem. The charming relationship of Lionel and Bertie Lionel Longue and King George is a fascinating development as Lionel insists upon a very familiar and equal relationship in order for his therapy to work. The film poignantly points out the contrast of the overwhelming difficulty for the King of England to speak and the overpowering oration skills of Adolph Hitler and Benito Mussolini. In one scene the royal family is watching a news real of Hitler giving a very impassioned and dynamic speech as only Adolf Hitler could do, and the King's daughter asks her father what he is saying. King George enviously replies, "I don't know, but he seems to be saying it rather well." Director Tom Hooper was at the BFI London Film Festival to talk about the film and mentioned that King George VI was writer David Seidler's hero and inspiration as a child because he used to listen to the King on the radio during WWII reassuring himself that if the King of England could cope with a stammer so could he. Eventually Seidler set out to write about King George VI and found that Lionel Logue's son had his diary but would not hand it over without permission from the palace. To his delight the Queen Mother replied giving him permission but asked if he would not release anything in her life time because the memory was still so painful. David Seidler kept his word and in 2005 began writing a screen play that turned into a stage play and finally back into a screen play. This was a truly delightful film to watch, supported by a powerful cast and for many people this film will be like an enjoyable course in English History for Dummies as the history and drama of King George's brother abdicating the throne and Adolf Hitler threatening to plunge Europe into a Second World War unfold in a very personal story of struggle.by Shane Kester
By a strange irony the film I'd watched at the cinema the previous night was 127 HOURS by Britain's most innovative director Danny Boyle whilst this evening's offering was THE KING'S SPEECH which had made in Britain plastered all over it . Boyle's film fails to a large extent because it's rather anti-cinematic where as Tom Hooper's film should fail down to the rather passé seen it all before feel that tries a little too hard tro appeal to prize ceremonies . If I was disappointed by Boyle's latest offering I was pleasantly surprised by THE KINGS SPEECH The <more>
movie suffer somewhat from the hype surrounding it but that's not to take away from the fact that it's one of the most charming films I've seen in a long time . Watching a movie at a cinema has both pros and cons . It's an expensive night out and there's the danger of being surrounded by philistines and peasants of the most bourgeoisie kind but one good thing is to guage public opinion as to the merits of a movie and listening to the crowd react to the pithy dialogue with delayed laughter reminded me how an audience reacts to the best works of Wood Allen or Mike Leigh . This is very much comedy of manners developed to its best potential Colin Firth is an actor I first took notice of in TUMBLEDOWN . He's best at playing manly roles but until now he's been best known for playing Mr Darcy in PRIDE AND PREJUDICE but is never less than superb as Prince Albert/King George and this is a career defining performance which will almost certainly earn him an Oscar .. Geoffry Rush as Lionel Logue as a maverick speech therapist who has a slightly dark secret is equally superb and will earn an Oscar nod at least . With this type of movie a film largely succeeds or fails due to the supporting cast since the two are in danger of dominating the film to the detriment of everyone else but Bonham Carter , Jacobi , Pearce and Gambon make an impact with their small roles as does as unrecognisable Anthony Andrews Realising that the main story of the Prince's stammer isn't enough to carry a 2 hour film the screenplay by David Seidler has a couple of subplots involving King Edward's abdication and the ascent of Hitler in Germany and director Hooper develops the subplots very well . If there's a problem with the film it does have " Award winning movie " written all over it but as I said it's so charming you quickly forget that . If it sweeps the award ceremonies it'll probably be down to the merit and even this republican film goer was swept up in the story . In fact it made me proud to be British