Directed by Tom Hooper
Written by David Seidler
The achievement of Tom Hooper’s sophomore effort, The King’s Speech, is in its visual storytelling. The story revolves around Prince Albert and his struggle with a speech impediment as he becomes King George VI of England and must guide his nation through the tough time of World War II, just after they were beginning to recoup from The Great War, or World War I as it is known now. The intrigue, at least for me, is the historical aspect of the film. Last year, I took a class on 20th century British History and to my amazement I remembered more than I thought, at least when presented with it on screen. But at the same time, this film is not about the history as it is about the characters and the human condition.
The King is portrayed by Colin Firth, who has quickly become one of my favorite actors. To see him here, you too would know why as his performance as a man with a bit more than a speech impediment is terrific. And his coach, played by Geoffrey Rush, is great as well. The story really is about these two men and the relationship they develop. It is remarkable the class system in almost any country in the world today, but a look into the British one just before World War II creates a compelling story and a compelling film. Helena Bonham Carter also shows up as the wife of Prince Albert and makes a good showing, but her character is not on screen enough to merit anything more than a compliment to the actress.
Art is subjective and garners a different reaction from everyone who perceives it. Film is art and this film is definitely an art that garnered a positive reaction from me. In addition to the wonderful acting, interesting story and storytelling by director Tom Hooper, the film features fantastic cinematography and a wonderful score by composer Alexandre Desplat. Danny Cohen’s cinematography is different, original and beautiful. Desplat’s score does a great job at setting the mood of the film as well as almost making the music stutter like the main character. It was marvelous. The film seemed minimal but left a maximum impact on me. It is a film worthy of recognition.