“Winner of the Academy Award® for Best Actress, Dame Helen Mirren gives a spellbinding performance in ‘The Queen,’ the provocative story behind one of the most public tragedies of our time the sudden death of Princess Diana. In the wake of Diana’s death, the very private and tradition-bound Queen Elizabeth II (Mirren) finds herself in conflict with the new Prime Minister, the slickly modern and image-conscious Tony Blair. ‘The Queen,’ also starring Academy Award® Nominee James Cromwell (Best Supporting Actor, ‘Babe,’ 1995), takes you inside the private chambers of the Royal Family and the British government for a captivating look at a vulnerable human being in her darkest hour, as a nation grieving for its People’s Princess waits to see what its leaders will do. Suspenseful, heartfelt and riveting, it’s a fascinating story you won’t soon forget.”
“The Queen” is rated PG-13 for brief strong language.
Most interesting is the insight into Queen Elizabeth herself. The movie certainly doesn’t paint a very flattering picture of her. She comes across as cold hearted, out of touch with her people, and stubborn. She is perfectly portrayed by Helen Mirren. It is one of those rare performances where the actor or actress is so utterly transformed that you no longer see them within the character. Mirren does play Elizabeth with a bit of humanity, but it’s only when she’s felt the cold, hard slap of reality and public opinion turning against her. It’s also unusual to see the Queen cruising around in a Land Rover or chatting with her husband informally. It’s not the usual formal and stuffy image we have of her.
Also notable is Michael Sheen as Tony Blair. Blair didn’t become well known to most Americans until after 9/11, but we see him dealing with his first political crisis in the film. If anyone comes out smelling like roses in this soap opera, it’s Blair. Not faring as well is Prince Philip played by James Cromwell. He comes across as arrogant, insensitive, and a bit of a moron. I have a feeling that none of the creators of this film won any friends in the British Royalty with “The Queen.”
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