My answer during and after TIFF to everyone who asked – what’s the one movie I should see? – has been without fail The King’s Speech. And not only because I adore Colin Firth which, obviously, I do. But also because I adore Geoffrey Rush. And the two of them together, the chemistry, the way they both elevated their games, it’s the kind of acting that makes going to the movies so much fun, and the kind of acting that reminds you it is indeed very much an art.
I wrote about this in my column for The Globe & Mail but I realise I never recounted the story here – my car ride with Geoffrey Rush the night of Colin Firth’s birthday party. I was with Shinan Govani of The National Post. We were heading to another event in his car. Rush couldn’t find his ride and he was heading to meet his friends, local Toronto folks, at a very local Toronto bar. So he just hopped in with us.
There we were, jammed in the backseat with Geoffrey Rush who chatted happily and openly about his career, his movies, music, Joaquin Phoenix (called him “esoteric” which elicited huge laughs because only he could be so kind and yet so obviously shrewd in his description), like it was the most normal thing in the world to be hitching a lift from strangers. When he arrived at his destination, he hopped out of the car, no handler, and ambled towards the pub. It was around 1am. I hear he stayed til at least 4am, badass motherf-cker.
Anyway, on the way there he told us about how The King’s Speech came to be, because, really, Rush was the one who started it. He was at home in Australia, woke up one day, checked the mailbox, and there was a script inside. From some writer who lived in the neighbourhood. At the time it was written as a play. Rush loved it and thought it’d be better as a movie. So then his agent had it turned into a movie screenplay and here we are, already one of the most beloved movies of the year, and no doubt, a lock for a Best Picture nomination.
This one is a fist pumper, a heartswelling fistpumper. You’ll see from the trailer. One of those truly spirit-lifting films that doesn’t succumb to schmaltzy impulse, that doesn’t give into the Oprah-ness of certain moments. I’m a f-cking bitch, but even I love a good movie hug now and again. And this is what The King’s Speech is: a true story movie hug supported by world class talent, wonderful direction, and a message you can actually believe in.
Woah. I have to chill. Too much too soon might jinx it. But it’s hard not to be enthusiastic when you love something so much.
Photos from Wenn.com