Saturday, September 16, 2006

Rank & Bile At The Movies - The Queen

Today it was off to The Barbican to see The Queen. Stephen Frears tackles one of England’s most awkward weeks in history, told from the perspective of those who shaped it. The death of Diana Princess of Wales sparked a national mourning the likes of which had never been seen and plunged The Royal Family into a crisis they couldn’t comprehend. Helen Mirren plays The Queen at perhaps her most vulnerable point in her long reign, out of touch with her people and struggling to make sense of an England that has moved beyond the protocols she knows and upholds.

Mirren is fantastic as the beleaguered sovereign managing to portray just the right mix imperious and vulnerable. She is ably supported by the excellent Michael Sheen as Tony Blair and Sylvia Syms as a frail but mentally sharp Queen Mother.

This is a fascinating glimpse at a Royal family in crisis who are rescued by their newly appointed Prime Minister. Made more poignant by the real footage of Diana. Amidst the drama there is also a great deal of humour but not necessarily all at The Royals expense. In fact both Blair and The queen come out of it rather well and The Queen’s observation that one day Tony Blair will find himself unpopular with the public too is both a topical and ironic close to the film, given current circumstances.

Definitely worth seeing. Mirren’s is a tour de force performance though it’s probably for the best she has already been made a Dame!

See The Trailer

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Gareth said...

I also saw this film over the weekend and it was very enjoyable.

Helen's performance as the Queen was fantastic.

When at last she made her speech to the British Public I wasn't sure if it was Helen's voice or that of the actual Queen.

Great Film...

Jonny said...

Fabulous film brilliant performances all round. Jonny