Handyfilm etc

Film reviews and other thoughts

My Photo
Location: New York, New York, United States

Sunday, October 01, 2006

The Queen

The Queen is Helen Mirren, and Helen Mirren is The Queen. Although it is certainly the better film, The Queen resembles The Devil Wears Prada in being almost impossible to imagine with someone else playing the pivotal role. And Meryl Streep’s performance in Prada and Mirren’s in The Queen are the acting high points of the year – exhilarating star turns that take their respective movies into realms their makers must hardly have dared hope they could go.

When I heard about this film’s premise, I groaned inwardly. How could they bring it off? Actors playing such familiar figures as Tony Blair and the British royal family, during the period surrounding the death of Princess Diana – it seemed a recipe for a silly, grotesque failure. And yet as deftly scripted by Peter Morgan and directed by Stephen Frears, The Queen is a comedy of manners with a real heart. It’s not a great movie, but it’s a marvelous entertainment, both hilarious and moving. (The closest equivalent may be Mike Nichols’s movie adaptation of Primary Colors, in which the Clintons were fictionalized into characters in a sly comedy that was satirical but not cruel.)


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home