I just saw the film, The King’s Speech, this past weekend and I was simply amazed by the quality of the writing, the direction , and the acting. Based on the true story of King George VI who ascended to his throne in England because of the abdication of his brother , Edward, due to his desire to marry American divorcee, Wallis Simpson.
The film focuses on his lifelong struggle to overcome his stammering speech , especially in the age when radio was emerging and the royal family was being used more for media events. It was especially poignant as the nation relied on the King for his symbolic strength during World War II.
Geoffrey Rush, plays, Lionel Logue, an Australian-born speech therapist. Logue helps the soon to be King work on breathing and other exercises to help him with his speaking. What turns out to be a fiery relationship by two equally stubborn men evolves into a lifelong friendship.
Against the backdrop of extraordinary events in history, is this very personal, human story. That is what grabs the film goer.
Colin Firth gives the performance of a life time. It is not only a character that he brings to life. It is an exclamation point to his already large inventory of stellar performances on film and stage.
Geoffrey Rush is also one who deserves praise as the very diligent and uncompromising Logue whose interest for his client is not hampered by any royal titles.
The film brings you back in to that period of history and really lays on the table the issue of duty versus personal needs. It demonstrates sublime courage of the human soul. It also gives some framework to understanding the current monarchy.
The film is nominated for 12 Academy Awards. Yes, The King’s Speech is the film of the year!