Thursday, December 29, 2011

More seasonal suffering

If you would like to read reasoned and intelligent commentary on books and films, you might wish to give dear Rol a try. He is a very nice boy and may help you to try something you may not have considered before.

Alternatively you can stay here and enjoy (shurely shome mishtake. Ed) a foul mouthed lambast of one the most popular films of recent years. Is lambast a noun these days? I don’t know – has there been a decent film in the last ten years?

I watched “The King’s Speech” the other day. I even watched it all the way through, and I was sober so can’t explain that particular lapse of judgment, but at least when I continue my biased and ill-considered onslaught on this much applauded work of art, no one can accuse me of not watching the sodding pile of dross.

I find it hard (not quite impossible) to imagine a situation in which the world is threatened by a megalomaniac fascist oppressor (not Slimy Dave this week, do try to keep up) and those people considering taking arms against him being persuaded by words uttered by an outdated, inbred, over-privileged half-wit, whose ancestors had been megalomaniac oppressors themselves. Did their inner dialogue consist of “I see that things are a bit iffy over in Europe, shall we do something about it, or finish this game of bowls? Not sure, but our beloved Bert Saxe-Coburg-Gotha was just on the electric radio giving us a damn fine pep talk, let’s go and bash some Boche”.

My diatribe against the concept of royalty might lead you to believe that I have some personal issues with the current incumbents. This is not the case; neither do I hold them responsible for the actions of their predecessors. But you would have to search pretty carefully in the house of Windsor to find two connected brain cells.

Then the inevitable old chestnut of the class system. FFS. Is this the best you can do? See me. Or see the film, if you want to be persuaded that the British royal family could actually get on quite well with people. Let me know how you get on with that, and let me know if you would like your brain drying after it has been washed.

Or is it, perhaps, the story of one man’s bravery in the face of an enormous difficulty? A heart-warming story of victory over adversity? Well, given that the backdrop to all of this was the second world war, where adversity meant watching your family being tortured, gassed and burnt in Auschwitz, or having to scrape your best friend’s entrails off your face when he was blown up, or spending years in a prisoner of war camp being starved, or suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder for the rest of your life from the things that you had experienced, then I hardly think that learning to say “privileged pissing ponce” in less than 24 minutes bears comparison.

As for the acting, I have never considered Colin Firth to be anything special, Geoffrey Rush is a splendid actor who could have done this film while unconscious, and WTF Derek Jacobi was doing there, I don’t know; perhaps he needed some easy cash. Was there anyone else in it? Wasn’t it the fat one – you know the one in that crap thing with David Walliams - playing Churchill?

One day I might manage to sit through more than the first 15 seconds of “It’s a Wonderful Life”. If I do I will let you know how they made truly dreadful films in the old days.


I confess that, until reminded of it by one of my dear friends, that what this mediocre film needed was a good bit of crude sex. Let's face it, how unlucky was Bertie to find the only Australian who would have thought that therapy was the answer. Your typical Bruce would have suggested a few tinnies and giving the missus a fucking good seeing to. We would then have witnessed our dear old queen mother flung over the dining table in the great hall at Windsor and shagged mercilessly by an increasingly articulate heir to the throne. "G-g-g-g-od save the queen!" he would have screamed, increasingly purple faced and animated. The winter home would have been renamed Shaggingham, we might have seen a prince produced as a result, there would have been no princess Diana, and the queen mum would have died of exhaustion 50 years earlier, saving the tax payer a fortune in gin bills and gambling debts. The King's Shag. That would have been a good film.


Annie said...


I'm amazed we're still making this Upstairs Downstairs nonsense. I REFUSE to see it.

(It's A Wonderful Life is great though, not at all sentimental like you might imagine. It's properly dark, and the happy ending doesn't come cheap.)

Pearl said...

My husband refers to the movie as "The King's Peach". Then he laughs a nasty little laugh.

We've yet to see it.


Vicus Scurra said...

Annie. Thank you, and welcome. Alas, I find that I have a severe allergy to James Stewart.
Pearl. It is cheering that your dear husband can find pleasure in the face of such adversity.

english inukshuk said...

oh, I misread your title as "more seasonal stuffing" and was slightly confused

mind you, whatever your opinion - oh gracious and wise one - I wouldn't mind a seasonal stuffing from Colin Firth

Vicus Scurra said...

You have done it, EI - if only the producers had listened to you, then what a good, family film it could have been. I shall rework the original.

english inukshuk said...

but what about the sage and onion?

Vicus Scurra said...

Please, EI, I don't want to indulge in smut.

Richard said...

I'm shortly to be venturing into Ashford. Do you want me to film my fight for a parking space or will you be content with another free-range mince pie?

Vicus Scurra said...

Richard. I hardly think that mince pies are worth conflict. They are not on a parallel with the struggle against fascism. I suggest you stay at home and encourage your lovely companion to speak without nagging.

Rol said...

I suppose you want paying for that gratuitous plug.

You'll be pleased to know I just published my Top Ten Films of the Year thing... and TKS is riding high, just to make you scream.

So yah, boo, sucks to you.

Vicus Scurra said...

I did notice that. You big girl's blouse.

Liz said...

I haven't seen 'The King's Speech' but my Dad really likes it, which is a good enough reason to avoid it in my opinion.

Vicus Scurra said...

Liz. Welcome! Please let me know other things that your dad likes, so that I can avoid them too.

Geoff said...

Was Jimmy Savile in it? He was a Bevin Boy, you know.

Vicus Scurra said...

Geoff, Jimmy Saville played the part of queen Alexandra, grandmother of George vi. Unfortunately she had died before the events of this film, as had Bismarck, played by Allen Carr and Rudyard Kipling, played by Dame Vera Lynn. Kipling didn't die until 1936 but didn't really feature in the story.

Adam said...

I think I've found a version of "It's a Wonderful Life" that is short enough for you to enjoy:

Failing that, there's also this, even shorter version:

This is of course assuming that Comedy Central is nice enough to let you watch their video clips overseas.

Dave said...

I have not seen either of the films to which you refer. Thank you for confirming me in my desire not to do so.

I had no stuffing over Christmas.