The Kings Speech

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A wonderfully inspirational film, “The King’s Speech” stars Colin Firth as Britain’s King George VI. At the start of World War II, King George VI, afflicted with a speech stammer since the age of 5, finds it difficult to speak to his nation. Queen Elizabeth, beautifully played by Helena Bonham Carter, seeks the help of Lionel Logue, an Australian speech therapist spectacularly played by Oscar-winner Geoffrey Rush. From here, “The King’s Speech” plays out like a royal “Pygamlion” and it’s easily one of the year’s best films.

Expect to hear a lot about this movie throughout awards season. David Seidler’s sharp screenplay is certain to be on the Oscar ballot. Another certainty is that Colin Firth will be giving a speech of his own on Oscar night. This role is a career-milestone for him and he deserves all the awards recognition he will likely receive.

Factual historical period dramas are always important and educational, but rarely are they also as inspirational and entertaining as “The King’s Speech”. Director Tom Hooper has crafted an elegant cinematic masterpiece from a subject that sounds rather dull on paper. You literally must see it to believe it. Just like Firth’s King George, everything that is great about this film is the result of hard work and dedication. A labor of love that triumphantly achieves its goals.

Parents should know that “The King’s Speech” is totally harmless for an all-ages audience. Quite remarkably, the film contains no sex, nudity or violence. Because it is set inside the royal world of Britain, the language is kept very clean and proper. Yet the MPAA has decided to give this film an ‘R’ rating which restricts anyone under 17 in this country from seeing it without an accompanying parent.

The MPAA’s rating system was originally designed as a guide to help parents sort out which movies were appropriate for their kids to see. But it has become a symbol of censorship in America and I suspect politics and foul play are involved in every current ratings decision they make.

Despite numerous appeals, the MPAA has said that “The King’s Speech” will remain R-rated due to a 10-second scene in which Colin Firth runs through a laundry-list of swear words as part of his therapy. As these 10 seconds fly by, the ‘F’ word can be heard repeatedly. Not as a verb. Not as an adjective. Just as a word.

By contrast, I heard the ‘F’ word spoken at least 5 times in the new comedy “Morning Glory” which the MPAA has rated PG-13, and in that film there is even a reference to a porn website called Banging-Grannies-dot-com.

It is my opinion that the MPAA, and any movie theatre enforcing their ridiculous ratings by preventing a person of any age from purchasing a ticket for “The King’s Speech”, should be held legally accountable for unconstitutional age discrimination.

Lionel Logue is an interesting, eccentric character, the role which is essayed so magnificently by Geoffrey Rush, who is not afraid of the royal highness but is sacred of his wife. The entire characterization of the film is very well defined and is full of grace. And the actors too fitted neatly in to the skin of their characters.

The screenplay of the film is as tidy, neat as its frames. The various therapy sessions are funny and make you want to roll on the floor with laughter. The film doesn’t call for unnecessary drama and moves with a dignified pace just like the royal family. The build up to the climax is nerve wracking. The final speech by the King is enthralling as you too keep your fingers crossed just like the rest of his family, praying with each word that he utters “God don’t let anything go wrong this time”. And if you thought that only Fashion designer John Galliano loves Hitler then let me add one more name to that list, though The King George VI admiration towards Hitler was restricted towards his great ability as an orator.

The King’s Speech leaves you with a mystic irony- as the world prepare itself for the World War II, there was a moment of triumph for the king, his family and friends as he overcomes his biggest weakness-stammering. Don’t miss out on The King’s Speech; it’s a safe bet indeed!


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