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The Queen
DVD disk
04.30.2007 By: Sturdy
The Queen order
Director:
Stephen Frears

Actors:
Hellen Mirren
Michael Sheen
James Cromwell

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
The tradition-strict Queen Elizabeth II is faced with the news that Princess Diana has been killed in a car accident. With the urging of the more modern Tony Blair, the Queen must shed old traditions in order to keep the respect of the nation.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
I really didnít think that a story about the current day royal family not focusing on Princess Diana would be interesting enough to hold a viewer for two hours. However, with amazing performances from Hellen Mirren, James Cromwell and Michael Sheen, THE QUEEN proved to be a very good film.

I was also very pleased with the directing job of Stephen Frears. I was concerned that he would slant the movie either pro or anti monarchy, but he managed to give a well balanced look at the royal family. I was also surprised to see them paint Princess Diana in a slightly negative light. Usually, people are portrayed to be greater than they were posthumously. Instead, he showed us a fair look at how the royal family probably viewed her, but respected how the rest of the world looked at her. Itís a sensitive subject, but the movie handled it very well.

Even though itís been said many times, it still needs to be mentioned that Helen Mirren was amazing as Queen Elizabeth II. She delivered every line with seasoned perfection and gave the Queen a sense of humanity the general public is unaccustomed to. Itís a credit to her that she could curb her natural sexiness (yes, I realize sheís old enough to be my grandmother) and portray a woman that is anything but sexy. Michael Sheen also did a fantastic job as Tony Blair. I expect his performance to give him plenty of opportunities in the near future.

Overall, I was impressed with THE QUEEN for being a very well made film with exceptional performances. I was pleased Frears respected his subject matter and didnít turn it into a joke. I think audiences around the world will find THE QUEEN to be an enjoyable film.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary with Peter Morgan and Stephen Frears: These guys get off to a rough start and go off on subjects that have nothing to do with the film. There are also a lot of long pauses that make this commentary a little rough to get through. I didnít really find them that interesting and got bored with most of their discussions.

Commentary with Robert Lacey: This guy is a ďBritish historian and royal expertĒ. I love how they called in a ďhistorianĒ for something that happened less than ten years ago. Anyway, he actually did a pretty good commentary and he was obviously prepared for the recording. He offers a lot of information and Iíd definitely recommend this one over the other one.

Making of the Queen (19:30): There are more movie clips than Iíd prefer, but this is still pretty interesting. I really like Helen Mirren and she offers a lot of intelligent and insightful comments in what little time she has. Itís worth the watch for fans of the film.

There are also some Previews.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Sometimes when a single actor gives such a great performance, the rest of the movie gets overlooked and is sometimes passed off as being nothing else. This should not be the case with THE QUEEN. See it for Helen Mirrenís performance, stay for the good movie.
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