A 1939 visit by King George VI and Queen Consort Elizabeth of England to US President Franklin D. Roosevelt's family estate of Hyde Park, in the bucolic Hudson Valley of upstate New York, is the setting for this mischievously clever character study. The young king, still unsure of his place in world affairs (memorably depicted in THE KING'S SPEECH), makes the monarchy's first official visit to the US, hoping to affirm the two countries' relationship as war clouds mount in Europe. Welcoming him for a most unusual weekend in the country is sly charmer FDR – a revelation as played by comedic icon Bill Murray, who gives a mirthful and surprisingly nuanced performance. Crisply directed by Roger Michell, the film possesses a bold directness regarding the private lives of world figures, be they the petty squabbles of the king and queen (Samuel West and Olivia Colman, both exquisite) or the unusual power relationships in and out of the Roosevelt marriage: First Lady Eleanor (another wonderful performance by Olivia Williams – Murray's crush object in Wes Anderson's RUSHMORE), unusually close cousin Daisy Suckley (Laura Linney) and even his battle axe mother (Elizabeth Wilson). Official Selection, 2012 Telluride, Toronto, New York Film Festivals.

DIR/PROD Roger Michell; SCR Richard Nelson; PROD Kevin Loader, David Aukin. UK/US, 2012, color, 95 min. In English. RATED R

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Sat, Nov 17, 8:00

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