Thursday, September 9, 2010

Talk Like a King

One movie that is sure to have some sort of presence at next year's Academy Awards is Colin Firth-starrrer, The King's Speech. The movie hits theaters in November, but it premiered this week at the Telluride Film Festival in Colorado.

The movie, set in 1930s England, tells the story of the future King George VI, who must take over the throne of England after his brother abdicates, but George is faced with a problem, he has a debilitating speech impediment. How can a man be king and garner the trust of his subjects if he shows any weakness? A lot of the movie will focus on the relationship between Colin Firth's King George VI and his speech therapist, being played by Geoffrey Rush. Both are being touted as serious awards contenders for this upcoming year.

Being honest, I didn't really jump at the immediate idea of the movie, neither as Academy bait, nor as a good movie in general, at least one I wanted to see anyways. I usually don't like biopics, so I didn't see why I should be excited for this one. But that's changed thanks to this review from Kris Tapley of, who I like his views on movies. Kris praised the movie, and has actually peaked my interest into seeing a movie that I initially believed would be a banal experience at the theater. After all, how can a visually intriguing movie be made about the speech of a person? See, what makes me excited to see this movie now, is to see this underdog story brought to screen.

I've always been fascinated by how people like Jimmy Stewart, who had a natural stutter, managed to get their impediments under control and garner public adoration and approval. Just look at FDR and how well he is remembered; and there is something even more dramatic about a king being the one that has to overcome such an ailment. I've always been a sucker for the underdog movie, but when the stakes are highest, it's always more intriguing, and when are the stakes higher than for a would-be-king of one of the most powerful countries in the world?

I think why I didn't initially care for this movie is cause I didn't see how it could be done and be entertaining at all. I mean, a ton of movies, in particular movies about British royalty, are just usually bland and lifeless, but that review really made me wanna see this. By the movie being in a sense more about the personal life and relationships of the king, it could give the movie more zest and a life of its own, rather than being a biography for the biography channel. So I guess the dying form of film critiquing still has some impact on the moviegoing populace.

Check out this clip of The King's Speech below:

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