The Queen

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Introducing ‘Movie Monday’.   Future film reviews will be published on Mondays.

A poignent, amusing, well scripted, directed, cast  and acted  insight into the Queen’s life. Recommended to people interested in  the process of manipulating ‘media spin’  and people curious about the British Royalty.

🙂 🙂

ratings explained


The Queen,    a recently released film covering the Spring to Autumn  of 1997,   a brief 4 months in the reign of the current British Monarch.   The significance of the months include the election of the first Labour government in decades, the  death of Princess Diana and its immediate aftermath.  The film has two official websites, a UK based ‘The Queen’  site (2k) and another official ‘The Queen’ website (3k).  


  • Excellent package.   Well directed,   excellent screenplay with Hollywood style ‘soundbites’ taken from original speaches and cooked-up for the film. An outstanding performance by Helen Mirren.   A fabulous cast including Sylvia Simms as the Queen Mother.
  • Alistair Campbell is just as offensive as I’d always imagined him to be.
  • British car industry remnants are still evident with the Prime Minister in a Rover and Royalty dashing aound Balmoral in half a dozen Land Rovers.   Unlike film’s like ‘The Layer Cake’ where modern British gangsters product-placed drive German,  rather than classic British, cars.
  • Witty.   Despite the drama and distress the film is laced with poignent humour and light relief.   Phew.
  • Diana’s life not disected.   Limited material or investigation into Diana’s life.   The film is definitely not a ‘who done it’ or questioning the Royal families relationship dynamic with Diana during her life.   Naturally it touches on this but not excessively or tediously.   This is a non-trivial achievement given the popular interest in Princess Diana.
  • Period film-footage: this was used very effectively to build atmosphere and convey the shere scale of the crowd scenes. The live shots of the big-screens erected in hide-park to cover the funeral,   the shots of the flowers laid outside the various palaces.



  • Breadth of appeal.   Not interested in the current British Royal family and political dynamics?   Then this isn’t the film for you.   I can’t imagine this film having a broad appeal,   but I could be wrong.
  • personally powerful details omited.   On the day of Diana’s death all the Radio stations played sombre music with all day.   The only ‘talk’ was an announcement every 30 minutes that Diana had died.   This was particularly impactful for me travelling on a 6hr journey on a foggy, rainy August day  after an emotionally and physically tiring weekend in a car with only the Radio for company.
  • Too respectful.   The satirical portrayals of The Queen mother in classic period TV shows like Spitting Image highlighted her enjoying a tipple of Gordan gin and gambling.   I noticed no subtle references to this satiral image.
  • 14 point stag: one theme in the storyline was a bit too soppy, with unclear significance to me.   The Queen has a ‘moment’ with a 14 point stag.   The stag is killed in an hunt with an unclean shot by an amatuer hunter,   The Queen visits the corpse of the stag and passes her comliments to the hunter.   Maybe this storyline was a comment on how she expressed her respect of death more openly to an animal than to her ex-daughter-in-law.   Maybe its an   indication of capability for respect and consideration.   I wasn’t sure.   The stag scenes were somewhat surreal.   For me they didn’t work.

Maybe you can point out more of the low-lights,   I’m having a bit of trouble seeing them 😉

The Queen
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