THE DEBATETHE QUEEN
By RAY FLEMING
IT'S no contest really because The Queen is nominated for both Best Film of the year and Best British film whereas Casino Royale is named only for the latter, less prestigious, Bafta award.
The Queen is superior to Casino Royale in almost every respect. It is an engaging and moving drama about real events that sticks very close to the reality of those awful days following Princess Diana's death. That national trauma is still alive in most people's minds yet I have not heard a single complaint that the film is inaccurate or misleading in any way; indeed, some of those involved directly have commended the film for its accuracy and sensitivity a remarkable achievement in a medium that too often plays fast and loose with the facts.
Judged simply as entertainment, The Queen is firstclass in every department: the acting, of course, but also the intelligent script for which Peter Morgan has been nominated by Bafta for Best Original Screenplay, as has the director Stephen Frears for his work. I see no comparable nominations in such key categories for Casino Royale. Ideally, I would prefer not to knock the Bond film and let it take its chances on a level playing field. But, its emphasis on depicting gratuitous violence in a film certain to be seen by many young people should alone rule it out of any consideration for a Bafta award.
By Jason Moore
AS far as I am concerned there is no contest; Casino Royale marks the return of an iconic figure while The Queen is nothing more than a TV film with Helen Mirren putting in a great performance.
In the closing credits of the Queen I saw no mention that anyone in the royal household had been involved and therefore it must be a work of fiction with some good old Downing Street spin.
The fact that the Queen was more popular at the height of the Diana crisis than Tony Blair is at the moment rather puts the whole film in perspective.
I also believe that this film shouldn't have been made until Prince Charles or Prince William was on the throne. Meanwhile, Casino Royale marks the returned of a great British figure, who thanks to Daniel Craig has a future. It is a gritty Connery-style Bond of old with some great action scenes and locations. Thankfully, Bond will still be around serving Queen and country long after the people's Prime Minister, his wife and his spin-merchants have left us.
Meanwhile, the new Bond has everything that the British people want and for the that reason it is still showing in Palma long after the Queen has disappeared and has been dethroned at the box office.
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