In a time of blockbusters, 3D, car chases and stunning dream sequences (see review for Inception! (Review) it makes a welcome change for a film buff like me to see something a little more character-focused. Of course, the Oscar people were all over The King before he'd even made his speech, lavishing high praise on its stellar cast - Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter, Guy Pearce, Michael Gambon and that hilarious little girl from Outnumbered to name but a few... - but hey we have dibs!!!
Of course, you couldn't get more quintessentially British than having a cast of British celebs acting their stiff upper lips off in a tale about our very own royal family. Factor in that it's about the underdog stuttering prince who we all know becomes the King who leads the British people through the second world war - well if you don't please go and read a history book! - and you've got yourself a film.
Watching the relationship develop between the prince and his vocal coach makes for brilliant viewing especially when the King-to-be tries the different techniques which seem to get ever more comical as the film progresses. And Colin Firth has never been greater than as the stuttering royal, taking the audience along with his awkwardness, making us will him on and feel his pain.
For those of you who, like me, thought Colin would never be better (or more compelling viewing!) than his Mr Darcy back in 1995 (oh that wet shirt...), there's a brilliantly funny reunion in this film when the King meets the wife of his vocal coach, played by Jennifer Ehle (who starred alongside Colin as his Elizabeth Bennet in the TV show) that had me grinning from ear to ear.
I'm sure there will be BAFTAs and Oscars a plenty for this film but for now, just get yourself a cup of tea, put on your finest hat and get yourself down to your local cinema and watch it.