The Queen

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Director: Stephen Frears
Starring: Helen Mirren, Michael Sheen, James Cromwell, Sylvia Syms
Time: 97 mins
Genre: Drama
Rating: PG

Helen Mirrens’s quiet and powerful performance as Queen Elizabeth II is almost a shoo-in for Best Actress for the Oscars. The only person who may wrestle it from her should be the catty Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada.

She plays the queen with much intricacy that every movement, walk, way she carries her bag, and of course that unmistakable crisp accent perfected to a T. Match that to her costume, wig and spectacles, you start to forget Mirren was once known for being a sex symbol.

This movie brought back a lot of memories in 1997 when Princess Diana died in a car crash in Paris. The whole world mourned. Strangers from as far as Singapore who didn’t know her or read about her started paying much attention to her life. The magnitude was unimaginable and as a teen, I glued myself to the goggle box at her interviews and ceremonies.

More people remembered Candle at the Wind, but not so much of what Queen Elizabeth did, or didn’t do. The movie shows another side of her, another side of the story. Interspersed with old footages and gathered from interviews, the movie almost seems so real.

The Queen has sensitively left out the two young sons out of the picture which was a right move. Tony Blair (Michael Sheen) had a significant screen time and much is hinted on his current political situation. This is not only a story about the queen and Diana, but the manarchy and party, media and people, and life and choice as well. Blair's statement "Will someone please save these people from themselves!" probably sums everything up.

The Queen – Class performance

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