I saw The King’s Speech last night

I only have a minute, so I’ll just provide my initial thoughts. The King’s Speech was a great movie but I don’t think it should have won the best-picture Oscar this year. The story was too simple/predictable.

What I liked:

  • The acting. Colin Firth exhibited an amazing fake stutter (he played the king), and Helen Bonham Carter charmed as the supportive wife (she’s always good, though). Geoffrey Rush played the king’s speech therapist; I really appreciated his believable portrayal of such an intriguing character (the speech therapist is real tough on the king while having lots of faith in him).
  • That the movie is based on a true story. I had been unaware that King George VI had a severe speech impediment and that he only became king because his older brother, Edward VIII, had to abdicate the throne (for proposing marriage to a divorced American socialite). Edward VIII only ruled for 11 months, making his reign the second-shortest in English history.
  • The music. The renowned Alexandre Desplat composed the majority of the film’s music, and let me say it stays with you (in a good way). I’ve had the lighthearted piano theme song in my head all day.
  • The cinematography. They are some great shots in this movie. For example, when the king and his speech therapist are walking through the fog-filled park, or when the speech therapist is making his way down the lengthy main aisle of the Westminster Abbey.

What I didn’t like:

  • Much of the story is very predictable. I guess it’s the nature of this type of movie, but you pretty much know that the king’s speech is going to be improved. I guess the mystery, though, lies in how he’s going to get there; not the end result.
  • Some of the characters are too vanilla. With the exception of the speech therapist, I felt like the characters were pretty one-dimensional. For example, some were portrayed as highly immoral while others where depicted as extremely upstanding citizens. I don’t think this is the fault of the actors, but rather the screenwriters. Then again, maybe back then things were more black and white.
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3 Comments on “I saw The King’s Speech last night”

  1. Katie Says:

    I disagree – I believe it definitely should have won and am so glad the voters finally chose a decent movie! This movie was all quality. No flashy graphics or 3D. It was about the story. I absolutely loved it and was thrilled with the Oscar results!

  2. Christine Laubenstein Says:

    Thanks for your input, Katie! I actually shouldn’t have said it shouldn’t have won until I watched all the other movies. So I will get back to you about this. I agree the story was awesome, but for me it was still lacking a certain something. Maybe I prefer movies with a little more ambiguity.

  3. soupy Says:

    Predictable? I don’t think that’s the right word when you are talking about a (mostly) historically accurate film. Sometimes real life is predictable and I think it was wise of them not to fictionalize plot twists in order to entertain the masses. It was intended to be a small independent film anyway, so I don’t think they were trying to please the mainstream “put explosions and sexy results in it” crowd.

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