Movie Review: Helen Mirren commands stately ‘The Queen’


Helen Mirren has been showered with praise for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II, and deservedly so – in a masterful performance, she injects humanity into this larger-than-life figure with an extremely limited amount of room to act; as in reality, The Queen remains mostly emotionless to us – but here we learn why.

Almost as impressive is Michael Sheen´s caricature of Tony Blair – his winning portrayal of the Prime Minister makes for an unlikely hero, a gentle voice of reason against the old establishment.

Story focuses on the death of Diana and the politics of ‘handling´ the aftermath; as Queen Elizabeth and the Royal Establishment contend with the media, public opinion begins to sway.

How Mirren´s Queen deals with this, and her relationship with ‘the people´, form the heart of this film. A lesser performance and the whole thing could topple over; here, we actually care about the Queen of England.

Director Frears is in top form with a fine cast; the material is light but ultimately memorable.

The Queen


Jason Pirodsky

Jason Pirodsky

Jason Pirodsky has been writing about the Prague film scene and reviewing films in print and online media since 2005. A member of the Online Film Critics Society, you can also catch his musings on life in Prague at and tips on mindfulness sourced from ancient principles at

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