Friday, 18 February 2011

Best Supporting Actor 2010: Geoffrey Rush in The King's Speech

Geoffrey Rush received his fourth Oscar nomination for portraying Lionel Logue in The King's Speech.

Lionel Logue the Australian speech therapist for King George VI (Colin Firth) as written in the King's Speech, is the sort of role that does seem to demand a certain style and form of acting. This particular style being show boating acting. The type of acting where the actor pretty much says look at me, I am doing all that I can to show of my acting skills. This type of role therefore fits Geoffrey Rush well he has his distinct style, voice, does fit well for this type of acting.

One could argue that Logue could have been portrayed in a less showier fashion, and yes perhaps he could have been, but really in the way he is written in this film it seems unlikely. He is character who is always making sly remarks, and purposely acting a bit theatrical. After all there automatically is the scene where he is entertaining his sons through his acting, it would be very difficult to act that scene without doing it in a theatrical way.

Rush takes the theatrical style, and he does do it with gusto. Rush most certainly does know what he is doing here, and he does do it well. His whole point is to purposely provoke the King, and in a way manipulate the King to help him speak more properly. Rush handles this well, being quite flamboyant in his way of mocking the position, and institutions of the royals, allowing for entertaining performance when he does this. His reactions to Firth's actions are always well timed, and well done even though they are not exactly subtle, but entertaining which is what he was going for. Rush knows how to use his manner, and his voice just right in a performance like this to this effect.

Rush does have more quiet scenes when Logue tries to find the psychological problems behind the King's stammer or more specifically when he is giving the ques to the King when he makes his climatic speech. Rush somehow remains still always very controlling, even in this quieter scenes. Again what he does are reactions to Firth, which again he does well, and I did believe his ability to manipulate the King, because of Rush's special manner of delivery. A showy role for a showy performance, I could easily see someone really disliking this self-aware performance, but I thought it did work out for the character.


Anonymous said...

He was really good but I thought Colin Firth was miles better. Great review! So I guess it will be:

1. Christian Bale (maybe).
2. John Hawkes.
3. Geoffrey Rush.
4. Jeremy Renner.
5. Mark Ruffalo.

dinasztie said...

I loved this performance. I actually prefer him to Firth, a bit.