I have been disappointed by far too many films of late. Seen the recommendations, read the glowing reviews, listened to the gushing from others, then suffered through 120 minutes or so of flaccid, poorly written guff. These excuses for a story, all too often, peter out rather than end, because the writer(s), though able to grab a germ of an idea from somewhere, were too unskilled or too lazy to construct an effective story arc and, thereby, incapable of rewarding us with a satisfactory ending, or in too many cases, any ending at all. The story ‘fades out’ along with the camera, leaving me wishing I had not bothered to undertake this pointless journey and leaving me feeling cheated.
I am, however, delighted to say that this was not the case yesterday. For the first time in some years, I gambled my injured and troublesome spine on the unexpectedly comfortable seats at the Village Cinema in the Knox Shopping Centre to watch ‘The King’s Speech‘ with my wife.
What followed was roughly 118 minutes of cinematic delight, such as I have not experienced for some time. The reviews are out there, if you have not already read them or seen the film, and I do not lay any claim to be qualified to be a film critic. But I loved this movie in every way. The cinematography, the sets and the recreation of England in the 1920s-1940s, the story and dialogue from an outstanding screenplay by David Seidler (The oldest ever winner of a best original screenplay Oscar – so there’s hope for us all yet 🙂 ) and, without exception, the actors.
Colin Firth deservedly won an Oscar (how many times I longed to be able to reach into the screen and help/comfort his proud, private, emotionally scarred ‘Bertie’ King George VI) and Geoffrey Rush, Executive Producer and shining heart of the movie in his finest performance to date as the compassionate and unorthodox Lionel Logue, should surely have won an Oscar, too.
And so many familiar faces in the other roles, all giving excellent performances.
My personal highlights were: Anthony Andrews and Claire Bloom reunited from Brideshead Revisited; the always excellent Timothy Spall channeling Winston Churchill, Jennifer Ehle reunited with Colin Firth and the unexpected appearance of the always engaging and delightful Ramona Marquez as Princess Margaret.
Should I have left you in any doubt, I thoroughly enjoyed ‘The King’s Speech’, have already downloaded the non-fiction e-book by Mark Logue and Peter Conradi to my Amazon Kindle and look forward to buying the Blu-ray disc in April.