Movie Review: The King’s Speech (2010)

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No one is perfect. Not you, not me, not even royalty. Everyone got some flaw about them. I for one am a loud guy who laughs at his own terrible puns. And a lot of times thes imperfections can be very embarrassing. Today we are taking a look at a movie about a man with such an imperfection… only on a bigger scale.

Ladies and gentlemen… “The King’s Speech”.

This movie is about King George VI (Colin Firth). Well to be more precise the movie is for the most part set before he became George. He is supposed to be able to give these great speeches to the people, problem is he has a stammer. He tries everything to get better, but nothing works. Then one day his wife (Helena Bonham Carter) gets a tip about a rathe unconventional speech therapist named Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush). So George starts going to Lionel to get better and try to get rid of his stammer. And so begins a long and different friendship. I have to admit, the story is a bit predictable. However, it is presented in such a way where you don’t mind it. The story is both well-written and interesting with a good dose of emotion in it. You want to see this guy succeed in giving a good speech because of how great the story is presented.

The characters are well-written, realsitic and superbly acted. Colin Firth gives the performance of a lifetime. There are so many little nuances in his body language when he plays this troubled man. And of course Geoffrey Rush is great too, I mean… he’s Geoffret frickin’ Rush. But I did enjoy all the people in the movie as they were all really well-written and really well acted.

The score for the movie was done by the amazing Alexandre Desplat. What I like about the score in this movie is that it doesn’t need to be overly dramatic and bombastic but rather is pretty quiet with mainly strings and piano being used to create this beautiful score. Sure, there are a few other instruments throughout, but the score mainly consists of strings and piano. And I love it!

Director Tom Hooper did an excellent job directing this movie with a lot of professional work behind the camera. The movie looks really good even though some people might complain that it is rather dark in visuals (Sidenote: I’m not such a person, but I acknowledge that some people will). What I also really liked anout this movie was one scene… it was fantastic. While I am not gonna spoil here what it is I can mention that it is from one of George’s and Lionel’s sessions. Those of you who have seen the movie might know what the hell I am talking about!

This movie was incredibly well-received by audiences and critics alike. On Rotten Tomatoes it got a 94% positive rating with a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 88/100. Roger Ebert really seemed to like the movie as he gave it 4/4 stars. And of course finally on imdb.com it has a score of 8,1/10 and is ranked #220 on the “Top 250” list. The movie also won 4 Oscars in the categories of Best picture, Best Actor (Firth), Best Director and Best original screenplay. The movie as also nominated for an additional 4 Oscars in the categories of Best supporting Actor (Rush), Best Supporting Actress (Carter), Best cinematography and Best Film Editing. 

“The King’s Speech”, while predictable has a terrific and emotional story with great peformances, a great score, great camera work/cinematography. Time for my final score. My final score for “The King’s Speech” is a 9,81/10 and of course gets the one and only “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”
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Review of “The King’s Speech” is now done.

Question of the day, do you know or have known anyone with a stammer?

Movie Review: Gladiator (2000)

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History is something that has always interested me. I don’t know why shit that happened a long time ago is so interesting to me… it just kinda is. And that means historical movies should interest me more than anything, right? Well that might be true in some cases. But then there are shit historical movies as well. The movie we are taking a look at now is sort of a historical movie. It isn’t really a historical movie in the sense of it following a real historical figure, but rather is set in a time period which is now considered history.

Boys and girls… “Gladiator”.

This movie follows Roman general Maximus Decimus Meridius (Russell Crowe). He is a great general who have won many battles. Why is that important? Because it is part of his character and because it plays into the story. After one battle he is betrayed by Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix), the emperor’s corrupt son. He got Maximus’ son and wife killed and got Maximus imprisoned. After a little while he gets bought by a guy and is turned into a gladiator in the great arena together with a bunch of other guys, including a black man named Juba (Djimon Hounsou). And through the movie we get to see how he goes from low ranking gladiator to what I like to refer to as “Mr. Big Cheese”. And seeing this story/journey unfold throughout the movie is pretty fucking awesome. Not only does it show the battles Maximus goes through to get higher rank, but it also shows the political intrigues brewing beneath it all… and that is to me very interesting. So yeah, the story in both idea and execution was excellent.

The characters all have different personalities and those personalities are easy to see and they are very well-written. I don’t really have too much more to say there otehr than the fact that I was very interested in the character of Maximus Decimus Meridius. I am not saying I can relate to the guy, but I am saying I really found him interesting and intriguing. Also, all characters in this movie are incredibly well-acted. The actors do a tremendous job filling the shoes (or sandals in this case) of these characters.

The music really did help sell the time period. Not only because it really had the ambience that would be needed to sell it, but also because it had some pretty epic tracks. And while I can’t list them on the top of my head I can at least say that I loved it.

Ridley Scott, you are a magnificent magnificent filmmaker! This movie looks amazing! The camera work is fantastic in both just regular scenes and action scenes. Sure, there is a little bit of shaky-cam during the action scenes but not enough that it bothered me. Ridley Scott made a very good looking movie. Also, the kid who plays a (sort of) key part in the story was not too bad either. You probably think I should have mentioned that in the “Characters/Actors” segment, but I didn’t because I felt it fit better here on “General Stuff”.

Time to see how the movie did among the movie sites and critics! On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 76% positive rating with a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it got the average 64/100. Roger Ebert didn’t seem to like this movie too much since he gave it 2/4 stars saying:

“It employs depression as a substitute for personality, and believes that if characters are bitter and morose enough, we won’t notice how dull they are.”

On imdb.com this movie has a score of 8,5/10 and is ranked #47 on the “Top 250” list. This movie also won 5 Oscars (Best picture, Best Leading Actor, Best Costume Design, Best sound, Best Visual Effects). It was also nominated for an additional 7 Oscars (Best supporting actor, best director, Best screenplay directly for screen, Best cinematography, Best film editing, Best original score, Best set decoration).

I have given my thoughts about a few things on “Gladiator”. This movie has an interesting story, great acting, fantastic music, great action scenes, interesting characters and one of the best endings in movie history. Time for the final score. My final score for “Gladiator” is a 9,62/10 which grants it the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”
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“Gladiator” is finally reviewed.

ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED!?