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The King's Speech (2010)

8.1
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 344,585 users   Metascore: 88/100
Reviews: 596 user | 461 critic | 41 from Metacritic.com

The story of King George VI of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, his impromptu ascension to the throne and the speech therapist who helped the unsure monarch become worthy of it.

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Top 250 #203 | Won 4 Oscars. Another 100 wins & 128 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Richard Dixon ...
Private Secretary
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Chauffeur
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BBC Radio Announcer
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Dominic Applewhite ...
Ben Wimsett ...
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Storyline

Tells the story of the man who became King George VI, the father of Queen Elizabeth II. After his brother abdicates, George ('Bertie') reluctantly assumes the throne. Plagued by a dreaded stammer and considered unfit to be king, Bertie engages the help of an unorthodox speech therapist named Lionel Logue. Through a set of unexpected techniques, and as a result of an unlikely friendship, Bertie is able to find his voice and boldly lead the country through war. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It takes leadership to confront a nation's fear. It takes friendship to conquer your own. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

24 December 2010 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El discurso del rey  »

Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£3,523,102 (UK) (7 January 2011)

Gross:

$138,795,342 (USA) (10 June 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Guy Pearce plays the older brother of Colin Firth's character. Pearce is 7 years younger than Firth. See more »

Goofs

At the end of the movie, while the King delivers his wartime speech to the nation, a group of men in the next room are listening to it via headphones. The very dusty bakelite loudspeaker cabinet on the table was manufactured in the UK, by the broadcast relay company Rediffusion Limited, in the 1950s. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Title Card: 1925 / King George V reigns over a quarter of the world's people. He asks his second son, the Duke of York, to give the final closing speech at the Empire Exhibition in Wembley, London.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the end credit roll, Philip Clements is listed twice as Assistant Sound Editor. See more »

Connections

Featured in Bad Movie Beatdown: Review of 2011 (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Lionel and Bertie
Music by Alexandre Desplat
Recorded at Abbey Road Studios
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A Royal Treat
17 December 2010 | by (Columbus, Ohio) – See all my reviews

You heard it from me: Not even James Franco with his boffo performance in 127 Hours can beat Colin Firth for the Oscar in King's Speech, a docudrama about the Duke of York (Firth) becoming King George VI while overcoming a crushing stutter. Not only does the actor get pitch perfect the stutter, but he also invests a kindness, courage, and vulnerability in the character that work in harmony to create an unforgettable George in an exquisite period peace.

Not to forget how generously Geoffrey Rush underplays Lionel, the speech therapist who is instrumental in making the king a speaker and a friend. That low-key acting allows Firth the room to expand his king's personality without interference from an Oscar-winning co-star. This is history as I like to learn it—honest and engaging with palaces and minor characters well-appointed and underplayed themselves as part of a mosaic of challenges facing a handicapped king and a nation on the brink of WWII. The pace is close to languid, better to allow us to settle in for the painful transformation of a man unused to public speaking but used to family mocking his disability.

George's bravery is the film's heartbeat, not flamboyant courage, mind you, but rather the kind that wakes us up to the character as complex and lovable. But valor is not his exclusively, Guy Pearce's Edward, who abdicates for his love, Wallace Simpson, can be seen as a courageous man giving up a crown for love or a fool falling for a twice-divorced socialite.

Such an ambivalence is fitting for a film that gently introduces you to a period in British history when alliances are not clear and allegiances dangerous. One thing is patently clear, however—this is going to be on most critics' best film of the year list with a sure Oscar winner for its star. If Firth missed the brass ring last year in A Single Man, he'll grab it this year in King's Speech.


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