Director: Tom Hooper
Cast: Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter, Guy Pearce, Jennifer Ehle, Michael Gambon, Derek Jacobi, Timothy Spall
Synopsis: The Oscar winning film that tells the story of King George VI (Firth), who battled life long with a debilitating stutter. When his older brother (Pearce) abdicates, it is up to him to step in and guide the country on the eve of the second World War. To assist him in addressing his subjects via wireless, he enlists the help of unorthodox Australian speech therapist Lionel Logue (Rush).
A review by Film Nerd.
Revenge of the Film Nerds is a bit late on reporting on this film, despite the fact it is still playing in some cinemas even following its release on DVD and Blu-ray. There is simply no excuse for this oversight, as it is a film well deserving of all the accolades heaped upon it, and is one of those rarer instances these days where the Academy chooses a deserving winner correctly.
The story of King George VI is a simple yet inspirational one. His early abortive attempts at public speaking can only draw sympathy, even for those that have not personally experience the debilitating effects a stutter can have. It is not a long stretch to amplify that in one;s mind when some-one is born into a role requiring public address. Firth is on fine form, never missing a beat when missing a beat, as it were. It takes a fine actor to take a character, real or not, with a clear defect, and to not make that a caricature. Firth imbues his “Bertie” with the right amount of frustration and anguish to show a real man with a real challenge. Then steps in Rush, on equally fine form. His Lionel Logue is certainly eccentric, his methods somewhat absurd, and yet the impact of his actions is imbued with a real sense of authenticity.
Of course, the film is building to overcoming the odds, especially as the world once again descends into war, requiring the public to hear a strong address from country’s figurehead. Once again, when this moment finally comes, the speech is not flawless, but it is strong and honest. Despite all these events though, I would argue that beyond this, it is a story about friendship. The Prince on his road to becoming King has been raised to not share his emotions, especially not with a civilian like Logue. For Logue himself, he has more than a high profile assignment… In figuring out what makes his client tick, a friendship is born that will define them both.
It is not a film of much action, nor of big, grand-standing moments. It is a film however of heart, and of inspiration. Well done to all involved in bringing this interesting piece of history to life in such a mid-blowing way.
5 stars out of 5