Film Screening 9th April, 2011

Poster for The King's Speech

The King's Speech 

8:00 PM, 9th April, 2011
No Guests

  • M
  • 118 mins
  • 2010
  • Tom Hooper
  • David Seidler
  • Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter, Guy Pearce

Note on the names of the royal characters. British princes were given half-a-dozen names, so when David (Pearce) ascended the throne he became known as King Edward VIII and when the stammering Albert ("Bertie" - Firth) Duke of York succeeded his brother he in turn adopted one of his middle names to become King George VI. And at the beginning of the film Elizabeth Duchess of York (Bonham Carter) adopts the pseudonym Mrs Johnson for her initial assessment of the effectiveness of speech therapist Lionel Logue (Rush), which led to this apposite metaphor:

Mrs Johnson: "My husband's work involves a great deal of public speaking."

Lionel Logue: "Then he should change jobs."

Mrs Johnson: "He can't."

Lionel Logue: "What is he, an indentured servant?"

Mrs Johnson: "Something like that."

What makes The King's Speech a great movie is that the moments of comedy and pathos derive naturally from the nature of the characters and their times. In an ironic subplot Lionel Logue does some acting as a hobby, but is rejected for a role by a London amateur dramatics society because he is an Australian colonial who speaks Strine rather than the King's English. (Indeed the title of the film is a triple pun, referring to the King's English, the King's speech to the British Empire at the start of the Second World War which is the film's climax, and of course to the King's speech defect.)

Richard Hills

Poster for Boy


10:13 PM, 9th April, 2011

  • M
  • 88 mins
  • 2010
  • Taika Waititi
  • Taika Waititi
  • James Rolleston, Taikia Waititi, Maakariini Butler, Manaia Callaghan

Boy is a 2010 comedy-drama which is the highest grossing New Zealand film of all time! In 1984, in Waihau Bay, we meet Boy (Rolleston). Boy is an 11-year-old fan of Michael Jackson who lives on a rural property with his gran, a goat, his younger brother and many young cousins. Gran soon leaves Boy alone for a week, during which he must look after his family whilst juggling school. When Boy’s jail-bird father Alameinn (played by director Waititi) appears with some of his friends in tow, to stay at the house whilst they search for long buried treasure, wackiness ensues.

Even as a cynic, I could not help but smile even before the title of the movie appears. The visuals of Waihau Bay and its inhabitants are wonderful. A beautiful environment and community on the other side of the world that still cannot hide from the influence of 80s American pop culture.

Even though Boy’s background and situation are quite grim, it is amazing how the movie handles this subject matter in such a tasteful and sweetly comedic way. The balance between comedy and grim reality is achieved perfectly, so that the audience is aware of Boy’s situation, while at the same time protected from it through the characters’ innocence and naïve perspectives of their own lives.

The young cast are brilliant and embody their characters completely. A sweet movie that covers some very grim situations, this movie will have you smiling throughout. Now if I can just find an 80s Tron tank-top like Boy wears in the movie my life will be complete.

Luke McWilliams