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The Madness of King George
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Alan Bennett wrote the script from his own stage-play, and it shows in the verbal elegance of the film, an elegance matched by the Oscar-winning art direction, and the locations harnessed by director Nicholas Hytner: Eton, the Bodleian, Greenwich Royal Naval College, St Paulís Cathedral, Syon House et al.
On one level this is the personal story of King George III ís descent into madness, and emergence from it, with all the cruelties and indignities of 18th century medicine. On another it is about the state, and power: the king already having lost much power has become to some extent an irrelevance; his declining mental powers echo his diminishing constitutional reach.
Above all though it is a piece of drama that gives a talented cast the opportunity to shine: Nigel Hawthorne was never better; Helen Mirren obviously relishes her role; Ian Holm , a young Julian Rhind-Tutt, Rupert Everett and Rupert Graves likewise. Hawthorne and Mirren were both nominated for Academy Awards.

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