REVIEW ROUND UP: ‘The King’s Speech’ at Telluride

Another day, more premieres and reactions from Telluride. Alex posted reactions for “127 Hours” and James Franco, another contender with chances at a best actor this season is “The King’s Speech”. It stars Colin Firth as King George VI who got over a speech impediment with the help of a therapist played by Geoffrey Rush.

The Hollywood Reporter’s Kirk Honeycutt says he film is “a sure winner” and goes on to praise the two leads:

Firth doesn’t just make a British king vulnerable and insecure, he shows the fierce courage and stamina beneath the insecurities that will see him through his kingship. It’s not just marvelous acting, it’s an actor who understands the flesh-and-blood reality of the moment and not its history. It’s an actor who admires his character not in spite of his flaws but because of them.

Rush is absolutely wonderful, and Hooper shoots him with all sorts of angles, lighting and strange positions that makes him look like an alien landed in 1930s London. Nothing much impresses him, and he is supremely confident in his own expertise, even when challenged by a star pupil and his coterie of advisers. He won’t yield an inch.

Kris Tapley of says the film was warmly received at its premiere and gives it 3 1/2 stars. Of the film’s director Tom Hopper and its two stars he says:

….and Hooper knocks it right out of the park. He films his actors closely with a wide lens to affect a sort of intimacy with the narrative. Indeed, it’s rare to feel this close with the characters in a film, and much of that is owed to a pair of truly exceptional performances from Firth and Rush.

These two have amazing, impeccable chemistry together. The script (along with their own input) offers a wonderful balance of humor and drama for the actors to work with. Each should comfortably find himself in the hunt for Oscar, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see the film land nominations for Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay and Best Art Direction (absolutely splendid). The cinematography and film editing are also quite worthy.

Gregory Ellwood of Hit Fix also thinks the movie will have a good run this awards season, concluding his positive review with:

“The King’s Speech” is one of The Weinstein Company’s strongest awards season contenders in quite some time. Whether it can lock down a best picture nod is unclear, but its absolutely in the race just as “An Education” was a year ago at this time. As for Rush and Firth, it would be shocking if one of them isn’t awarded another Oscar nod. The duo are that good. It’s also worth noting Hooper is assisted by an excellent production design team made up of production designer Eve Stewart and art director Netty Chapman.

Looks like it’ll be deja vu this awards season with contenders called Boyle, Firth and Rush.

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