Watching this trailer makes me sick. Allow me to explain myself. There were a lot of positives to this film before I saw this trailer.
1) Collin Firth won an Oscar in his last role in ‘The Kings Speech’, and was nominated for one in ‘A Single Man’ before that. Coming off of 2 straight Oscar nominations…what could go wrong?
2) The film boasts a strong cast outside of Firth. Ellen Burstyn is a 6-time Oscar nominee, winning one for her performance in ‘Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore’. Patricia Clarkson is also an Oscar nominee for her supporting role in ‘Pieces of April’. Orlando Bloom and Amber Tamblyn are part of the ensemble as well. This cast does build up your expectations.
3) And then there is the fact that the screenplay was written by Horton Foote, who won Oscars for his work in ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ & ‘Tender Mercies’. Foote past away in 2009, which makes this film that much more nostalgic.
As you can see there seems to be a lot to loom forward to in ‘Main Street’. That is until you actually see the trailer. The trailer is straight cheese. It looks like a story that is going nowhere. Every viewing thus far has chucked tomatoes at it. Living 20 minutes from Durham, it’s disappointing to see this turn out to be a dud (this will be a dud), and to see it paint an inaccurate picture of modern day downtown Durham. I Didn’t anticipate Firth falling to this depth after the height he climbed to in his previous film. It looks as if ‘Main Street’, as simple as it appears, was too big of a task for first time director John Doyle.
Feel free to watch this and tell me I’m wrong.
Rotten Tomatoes Grade: 95%
RT Top Critics Grade: 97%
Tomatoe Monster Grade: A
The Tomato Monster
I believed that ‘The Kings Speech’ lived up to all the hype, and then some. Maybe I’m overreacting with positivity because a movie with an uplifting story and message took home the Best Picture at the Oscars.
The movie wasn’t just good because it was a feel-good story. It was brilliant because it managed to keep your attention despite the fact that it didn’t involve CGI or violent action sequences. The film actually moved at a quick pace, due to a very witty script. The cinematography was unique for a historical movie. It was artistic, embraced different angles, and was at times choppy. ‘The Kings Speech’ did what every great movie should do: it moved the audience emotionally and it inspired.
The relationship between Firth and Rush was one of my favorites of all time, rivaling Val Kilmer and Kurt Russell in ‘Tombstone.’ Helena Bonham Carter was very impressive showing a different and more sophisticated side than we have been used to from her (Harry Potter, Alice and Wonderland, Sweeney Todd, etc.).
‘The King’s Speech’ is a movie that connects with a wide audience, because the film boasts a protagonist that is much more like the ‘average Joe’ than a superhero. A story of an unlikely hero, arising to an unlikely position in an unlikely time, who wouldn’t have made it with out an unlikely friend.
Nominated for 12…Won 4 Oscars
Won Best Directing – Tom Hooper
Won Best Picture
Won Best Actor – Collin Firth (1st Oscar, 2nd Nomination – A Single Man)
Won Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen – David Seidler
Nominated for Best Supporting Actor – Geoffrey Rush (4th Nomination – Shakespeare in Love (SA), Quills (LA). Won the Oscar for Best Actor in ‘Shine’)
Nominated for Best Supporting Actress – Helena Bonham Carter (2nd Nomination – Best Actress in ‘The Wings of the Dove’)
Nominated for Best Art Direction -Eve Stewart (2nd Nomination – Topsy Turvy) & Judy Farr
Best Cinematography – Danny Cohen
Best Costume Design – Jenny Beavan (9th Nomination – Gosford Park, Anna and the King, Sense and Sensibility, The Remains of the Day, Howard’s End, Maurice, The Bostonians. Won Oscar for ‘A Room With a View.
Best Editing – Tariq Anwar (2nd Nomination – American Beauty)
Best Original Score -Alexandre Desplat (4th Nomination – Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Queen)
Best Sound Mixing -John Midgley (2nd Nomination – Star Wars Episode I), Paul Hamblin & Martin Jensen
Nominated for 6…Won 1 Golden Globe
Won Globe for Best Actor – Collin Firth (“”)
Nominated for Best Director – Tom Hooper
Nominated for Best Picture
Nominated for Best Supporting Actor – Geoffrey Rush (Nominated for 5 Globes – Quills (LA), Shakespeare in Love (SA). Won a Globe for ‘Shine’ (LA) & ‘The Life and Death of Peter Sellers’ (TV)
Nominated for Best Supporting Actor – Helena Bonham Carter (Nominated for 6 Globes – Sweeney Todd (SA Musical or Comedy), The Wings of the Dove (LA Drama), Live From Baghdad (LA TV), Merlin (SA TV), Fatal Deception (LA TV)
Nominated for Best Original Score – Alexandre Desplat (Nominated for 5 Globes – The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Syriana, Girl With a Pearl Earring. Won Globe for ‘The Painted Veil’.
Arts Directors Guild
Nominated – Eve Stewart
Directors Guild Awards
Won Best Director: Tom Hooper
Producers Guild Award
Won Best Picture
Screen Actors Guild Awards
Won Best Cast
Won Best Actor – Collin Firth (Nominated 2 times – A Single Man)
Nominated for Best Supporting Actor – Geoffrey Rush (Nominated 5 times – Quills (LA), Shakespeare in Love (SA). Won award for ‘The Life and Death of Peter Sellers’ (LA TV) & ‘Shine’ (LA)
Nominated for Best Supporting Actress – Helena Bonham Carter (Nominated 2 times – The Wings of the Dove)
Directed by : Tom Hooper
‘The Kings Speech’ is the 2nd film Hooper has directed. His average score on the Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer is 94.5%
Movies with Passing Grades: The Kings Speech (95%) & The Damned United (94%)
Hooper had a very successful career directing in television prior to his work in ‘The Damned United’. He was nominated for the DGA for directing the HBO miniseries ‘John Adams’. He also won an Emmy for directing the HBO miniseries ‘Elizabeth I’. He was also nominated for Emmy’s for his directing in ‘John Adams’ & the PBS ‘Prime Suspect 6’.
Written by: David Seidler
Seidler has been nominated for 3 Writers Guild Awards for his work in television – By Dawns Early Light (Children’s Script), Onassis (Adapted Long Form), My Father, My Son (Original Long Form)
Seidler has written two movies that were critically reviewed and his average score on the Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer is 59%.
Box Office: $139,000,000 (US)
- It is a vivid picture of perseverance in the face of adversity.
- The relationships between Firth & Rush and Firth & Bonham Carter are a perfect example of why we aren’t meant to go through trials alone and that we are bettered by the accompaniment and influence of others.
- Helena Bonham Carter paints a picture of a loyal spouse.
- Unlikely times call for unlikely heroes.
- Don’t let your fear of failure discount you from leading people when they need it.
- The author, David Seidler suffered from a stammer as a child. Having heard George VI’s wartime speech as a child, he (later in his adult life) had written to the Queen Mother asking for permission to use the King’s story to create a film. The Queen Mother asked him not to during her lifetime, citing that the memories were too painful. Seidler respected her request.
- The role of King George VI was written with Paul Bettany in mind but Bettany declined to spend more time with his family and later admitted that he regretted his decision. Colin Firth was cast instead and later nominated for and awarded with an Oscar for his performance.
- At age 73, David Seidler became the oldest person to ever win the Best Original Screenplay Academy Award (Oscar) for this film.