This has been one of the periodic dead zones of the movie release year, so my new review in The American Conservative is of the DVD release of "The Queen," featuring Helen Mirren's stupendous performance. An excerpt:
"Any queen in particular, buddy?" responded the cabbie. "This town's full of them."
He dropped me on a street corner where hundreds had already assembled, including a dozen Irish demonstrators chanting IRA slogans. Eventually, the longest motorcade I'd ever seen rolled by, and, finally, there in a limousine window was the face on all those postage stamps, bestowing upon us her regal wave, a quarter-turn of her upright cupped hand. We bystanders erupted in cheers, including the IRA supporters, who hopped up and down in joy. Then she was gone, and the Irish protestors slunk off, shame-faced at succumbing to the glamour of the crown.
Yet the Queen's dignity was soon trumped by the rapidly emerging visual grace of her daughter-in-law, the Princess of Wales, a goddess who deigned to appear on the cover of People every month.