Sunday, October 09, 2011

The King's Speech

I admit it: I am prejudiced against Oscar-winning films. If a movie wins an award from the type of people who dole out that award, I am suspicious.

But I kept hearing from people whose opinion I respect that The King's Speech was excellent. Even though it's got an R-rating. The PG-13 movies are pushing it for me, with regard to how much ick I can bear. Nevertheless, I bumped into the movie at the library recently and nabbed the DVD to take home.

Oh. my. goodness.

That was one of the best movies I've ever seen. That's right up there with The Blind Side and Rudy and Luther and Anne of Green Gables and Renaissance Man and Gran Torino (and it doesn't even have the ick that Gran Torino does).

The movie says the right thing about duty. About family. About parenting. About persistence. About vocation.

I also liked the way it handled the abdication of King Edward. I remember one Sunday School teacher once upon a long time ago teaching us that it was "such a wonderful thing Edward did, giving up his throne for love. His love was so great, so immense, that he would give up anything, even the crown, to be able to spend his life with his beloved. Isn't that just like God's love for us?" Excuse me, but gag! Edward took another man's wife, selfishly indulging himself. That is NOT a picture of God's love for us; we do not liken the Lord Jesus to an adulterer. So I was glad to see that the movie did not glamorize Edward's decision.

But the thing I loved most about the movie was the "expert." The prince had received treatment and therapies from many doctors and other experts. He finally went to Lionel Logue who was, at the same time, two things: the real expert, and the imposter expert. Lionel wasn't trained, he wasn't credentialed, he wasn't conventional. Who ever let him give speech therapy? In our day and age, he'd probably be hauled before a government tribunal and fined and possibly jailed. The faker!

And yet, he was the one who finally helped. He was the one who employed unique ways of resolving speech difficulties. He was the one who tried to cut to the heart of the problem instead of just treating symptoms. The self-trained guy -- who learned by a) careful observation and b) diving in and doing what needed to be done for his neighbor in need -- found ways to accomplish what none of the other doctors could accomplish. Chalk up a big one for thinking outside the box!

I have some kids who would have been labeled ADD if they'd attended school. But they were homeschooled, and their oddball teacher didn't do the things we're "supposed to do" for ADD kids. My kids thrived.

I have a daughter with VCFS. She is homeschooled, and she is not receiving the typical special-ed that most VCFS kids receive. Neither has she been receiving the typical medical care that most VCFS kids receive. And for some reason, she's doing unusually well -- educationally, socially, and physically. There's no way to know how things would be for her if we'd done what all the medical & educational specialists recommended. But we do know that God has done wondrous things for Maggie "even though" her parents aren't doing what conventional wisdom dictates. The question is, should "even though" in the preceding sentence be replaced by "because"? Who knows? But the tale of The King's Speech shows that "because" ought not be ruled out.


  1. Like.

    - Jane Seyboldt

  2. Ditto. Great review, Susan. We loved this movie, and so did our daughter who stutters. Really need to buy this for the home library.

  3. Yep. One of my all time favorite movies.

  4. What a great review, Susan. Just saw this movie not long ago and I agree completely. Also, I love your reference to what homeschooling does for kids with special needs compared to the prescribed remedies recommended in schools. You and I are sure on the same page on this one. :)

  5. Thank you Susan. What a great review. This is also one of my favorite movies. We purchased it. I had not seen the correlation between homeschooling until you wrote this. I have to agree. Many people disagree with our homeschooling and feel that my kids are going to suffer due to their issues. I have seen a huge improvement in my kids and feel that I am very blessed to be able to have them at home with me and work with them in a loving environment. No one else is going to put as much love and effort into it as I do. Thanks :)

    ~ Kristine Dent

  6. I just realized something. Y'all have commented on the homeschooling aspect of the movie, which is the main reason I wrote the review.

    But there's also that thing about Edward's abdication. Pastor has been quoting Korby's line recently: 'I love you' means 'I will do whatever it takes so that you might live.' Life for a woman does not come from enticing her away from her husband. Life for a country does not come from placing your hormones and emotions ahead of the nation's needs. I still get angry over a SunSch teacher who would confuse the romantic love of self-indulgence with the true love of self-sacrifice.