Reviews

The Queen

3

Her Majesty (Helen Mirren) is high and haughty and resistant to change. Prince Philip (James Cromwell) is a ruder, cruder version of his Spitting Image puppet who, in his comment on the Diana death hysteria, swipes the defining line: “Sleeping on the streets and crying over someone they never met... And they say we’re mad!”

Stephen Frears’ taut run-through of the week following the demise of The People’s Princess sees the bickering royals isolated at Balmoral. Badgered to respond to “the mood of the nation” by New Labour kid on the block Tony Blair (Michael Sheen), Mirren’s monarch is all resigned stoicism. But despite the deftly dropped-in stock footage and zippy characterisations (particularly Mark Bazeley as the waspish Alistair Campbell), it’s more Sunday mid-evening in front of the box than Friday night at the multiplex.

 

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