The King’s Speech RENOIR RETIRO (Narváez 42), Jan the 11th, 20.00h

January 11, 2011

This is just an announcement to let you know that tomorrow, the 11th, we are meeting at 20.00 (Cines Renoir Retiro, c/Narváez 42. Metro Ibiza or O’donell) to see this interesting film with good reviews and two good British actors, Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush. The thread created below enocourages you to join us. Carmen will probably turn up too. Don’t miss it!



  1. Thanks, Roberto, it takes me back three years…but time passes and we are still here, so I will certainly join in and be there at 8pm, very much looking forward to it, it has been reviewed as fantastic.

  2. Well, as I am quite envious that I am not there with you, and also because I love good cinema -and Colin-, I’ve got my ticket to watch it on Thursday!!!!!, so that we can comment on it and thus, coming back to where we were three years ago…

  3. I saw the film yesterday, after such an exhausting working day that my head was a terrible mess. I thought I couldn’t be able to understand the story if it was going to be a dense one, but, indeed, I really enjoyed it. It’s not only a story of a man that overcomes his stammer, I think there is a very good picture of the time previous the second World War. The Queen’s cold character, that contrasts with the way Bertie behaviours with his daughters and wife, it impressed me so much.

  4. Hi, María, so familiar to read ou here!! So often as we did years ago….You will love the film.
    I liked EVERYTHING about it, colin Firth is BRILLIANT so naturally unnatural, so collected, so constrained, yet so real: George Ruff was also FANTASTIC, also very natural, both made their roles appear as if we were facing the very characters. I did not like Helena Bonham-Carter as much, but thought that the film as a whole is fit to fetch some prizes and the please the public at large.
    Don´t miss it

  5. I HAVE ABSOLUTELY LOVED THE FILM. Colin Firth cannot be better at his performance!!!!!, once again. You strongly believe him. You stand by him, by The King. Not only do you feel the fear with him but also the courage and think “You can do it, dear Bertie, you can!”.
    There were also some remarkable sentences… But I loved how it ended:
    – My friend.
    – Your Majesty.

    Ohhh, goose bumps!! He deserves the Golden Globe and every award!! I still remember how he took the Bafta last year… how gorgeous he was… Mr. Darcy…

  6. I am glad that you all liked it. Welcome Marta and thank you for your post. You did the right thing, Despite being tired, you went to see the film. Well done! What a pity you didn’t join Carmen and me, you always have such a nice time with her and in every outing in general…
    María, I’m delighted that you liked it that much. I enjoyed it a lot too and, honestly, I was impressed with Colin Firth’s acting. He was very good in his last role (A single man), but I prefer this one. Geoffrey Rush was splendid as well (as usual), however, I agree with Carmen about Helena B. Carter. I didn’t find her credible in spite of her lovely accent (she is much better in “A room with a view” 😉 ).

    The ending was a little bit disappointing though. Too conventional and politically correct in my opinion. The film might be based on real facts, however, I’ve seen such an outcome many times before. I don’t know but I would have omitted it after Firth’s finishing his speech. I mean, it is so obvious…You don’t need to show the farewell, acknowledgments and so on…Do you?

  7. What do you mean with aknowledgments and so on, Roberto? Do you refer to the fact that they become friends and they say so? I think that the end is really good in the sense that we see Bertie voicing his feeling -voicing, not stammering- to Lionel. Mind that Lionel was stronger in mind since the beginning, but believing in Bertie´s greatness more than Bertie himself. Remember when Lionel says to his wife: “He has to be great”, to which she answers: “Maybe he doesn´t want to be great. Maybe you want him to be great”. He believed in him and looked up to him. He stood by him, by the King, even though he called him Bertie, his equal. That´s why I liked the end. When the king says: “My friend”, recognizing their equality, and Lionel, humble and lovely, answers: “Your Majesty”. I find it quite brilliant… and moving!!!! I´m very Romantic… Sometimes I think that I lose my ability to be objective -to a certain extent- as I am so passional!!
    As to Helena… It is true that she is shadowed by the two magnificent actors. She doesn´t build up a believable character. She is first a wife who persuades his husband to seek for help. Then, she is the sweet, docile, archetypical wife. Then, she is ironical and funny. Her character lacks correlation.
    What do you think?

  8. In a room of a view, she is much better, Roberto, you are right 😉

  9. Hello everybody. I’m very pleased to meet you Roberto and Maria.
    I also think that the end of the film is great, and it performs the beginning of a long-lasting friendship. Helena Bonham-Carter doesn’t to be great, the focus is on the King, but she does some movements that the real Queen (who died not so many years ago) did, do you remember her on TV?
    The acknoledgements scene is also brilliant, don’t you think? Everybody is fascinating due to the fact that the King has overcome is stammer, just in such a difficult times, but, for a few seconds, the war is not important, only the speech, the way it has been said.
    Colin has won the National Society of Film Critics award, the Globe is nearer…

  10. I can’t believe it! 9 comments so far, what a successs! 🙂

    I’m romantic too María 😉 but it seems to me as if the ending of the film was excessively patronizing. I mean to say that the spectator knew he would eventually overcome his stammer. Everyone with a little bit of sensibility knows what his last effective speech means, for the King himself and for Lionel.

    As for Helena, I don’t know, I think she doesn’t show the breading as Colin does (he’s very good at this, is he not? Remember he was the perfect portrait of Mr Darcy. By the way, Marta try to watch this BBC series. It is a must!)

    By the by, what do you think about how both characters behave before the other on account of their belonging to different spheres? Who is right?


  11. Roberto, what do you mean with a excessively patronizing ending? I think you mean that they did what it was expected. The overcoming the stammering. Well, it is true that we knew, deep down, that he was going to do it well, but honestly, I felt nervous, which means that I wasn´t that sure! Which other end would have been suitable? All the film was about the speech. The film maker couldn´t deny it as it is the title of the film too!
    In some other films we´ve got those “patronizing” endings, as you call them, but not in this one, under my point of view. Nothing is missing and there is nothing left.

    Marta, nice to meet you too. I´m glad you watched this film so that we can share the illusion that Colin wins tonight!!! I´m dying to see him on the red carpet, so glamorous, stylish, handsome… I agree with you Roberto that you must see BBC´s Pride and Prejudice. And then, you tell us.

    They belong to different spheres. It is very difficult that they get mixed. The king was seeking for help and he found more than a therapy. He found a support in a person below him. Lionel knew this. He knew the King was going to be a particularly difficult patient. The first thing he did was to make clear the rules at his house. Rules strong enough to be obeyed by the King himself. This fact made Lionel be superior, under the roof of his house, he was the King. So the roles were swapped. Then he changed his name, with the same purpose. I liked Lionel because despite he was treating the King, he wasn´t intimidated. His first purpose was to help him and he did. He did so well that he got the King´s friendship. No one would have expected their friendship in advance. They would have said: “Unthinkable!”. But you see, some unthinkable things happen to happen… and they are gorgeous…

  12. Hello everybody. Yesterday night I started to see Pride & Prejudice; thank you, Roberto and Maryah, for the advice but Carmen did it before you. So, soon I’ll have a deepest knowledge of Colin Firth’s performances, because, there’s a great difference between watching his films in English than in Spanish.

  13. María, after finishing his speech we all knew he had overcome his complex, so let’s leave it there. We all foresee what comes next, don’t we?

    I was wondering, why should we show such repect and be submissive before royalty nowadays? Is it not absurd? Colin Firth even gives some hints about it when he cries out that he is only a king “symolically”. Geoffrey Rush’s behaviour, in my opinion, reflects reality and if there’s a difference between them (which does obviously exists) is socially (as it would occur to one when we move into a different social environment…)Uff, this paragraph sounds too serious… sorry

    Marta, well done! (You are clever) You will learn and enjoy at the same time. A word of advice: Do you really want to learn English properly? Do whatever Carmen tells you to do without hesitate. And, enjoy as much as you can of her classes and outings. You will also have fun and discover what a nice woman she is.

    I saw the series too because of her insisting us to do soo too. I’ve seen it several times and like it very much. Actually, I’ve read several novels of Jane Austen’s… they are very good.

    Sense & Sensibility (the film) is another must.

    You are right, watching films not translated gives you another very differnt perspective about the film and characters. Now that I’m used to watch them like this, I can’t stand doing so with spanish voices. I hate it!!

  14. Robertooo, nooooo!!! Let’s leave it, you say???!!! Noooooo, what about the enourmous gorgeous pretty smile of Bertie’s towards his dearest friend Lionel!!!??? We deserved to watch such a thing on the screen! We paid for that! Sorry, Roberto. Too much emotional. But I think that you should be a woman to appreciate that scene. (Now, comments).

    Sometimes so much respect -fear? cowardice?- towards people who are “above” us -not only in the sense of intellectual condition but also of social status-, prevents us from having a new perspective of things, a new feedback from a different background, and who knows if an unexpected marvellous something. So, yes, this time I agree with you, Roberto, that we have to knock down the barriers, because beyond them, beyond the protocols, beyond the politically correct… or beyond the suitable, there are wonderful people and wonderful life experiences.

    Do watch films on their original version, Marta. Whichever the language is. It is a very important part of a film, the sound of the characters, the acting is also about their speaking.

    You will love P&P, Marta, I’m sure. If you love English. Sense & Sensibility too. Emma is a very enjoyable book too. And then, once you have read them and have felt yourself as Lizzy Bennet, go to Bath and you will be the freak we already are. 😉 Join the club, you won´t regret it!

    And, finally, and before you faint, as Roberto wisely says, do listen to Carmen, she will put you on the right. Do not be blind.

  15. Well, I´m SO GLAD that at LAST we see a blog alive!!!!! And, of course, it is because the daffodils are BACK.
    Roberto, thanks for your nice words!!! honestly you think too much of me!!
    María and Roberto, WAOW, what fluency…I´m very proud of you…
    Roberto, I have liked the ending!!!!! For me it is necessary because it proves that Bertie, who was a Royal, and the King of England, values the help and dedication of Lionel and jumps the breach that separated them when he says “my friend” then, Lionel considers him superior, obviously his social position, and gives him his due “your Majesty”. For me it is vital, the King has got over his complex, has become THE KING with what being a king meant and means and is grateful to the person who has helped him achieve this very difficult goal. Having said this, all of you know that my forte is not the film industry while Roberto is an expert, so I don´t know that I am right, but for me that moment, that dialogue, was maravelous.

  16. Thank you, María, for your nice words about me!!! These students are not so enthusisatic as you were, we need the Dafs to give the blog a bit of fun and live.
    As I said in my previous post, I see it like you, I like the end!!!! Even if we are from different social backgrounds, and given that we should know our places, it is fantastic to reach such friendship as the King and Lionel did, and it is important that the King is aware of this…

    As to Bonham-Carter, she doesn´t seem so good, she is overshadowed by the other two, I presume her role is not so interesting..I would have liked to know if she liked David, which is what I read somewhere, because at one point she says she rejected York becasue she did not want to be a Royal and in the public eye, but I read she liked the heir…I´m going to read her biography, there is a recent one at the moment in bookshops

  17. Marta, so glad you are one of the few that joins in and is willing to learn…I´m glad you could find a place in our school in spite of the early difficulties…

  18. You see Roberto? You had to be a woman to like the ending… je,je,je.
    You’ll tell us when you read her biography, Carmen. Maybe she would deserve her own film… but with the same actress playing the role? I think she is a good actress, but beside these other two… it is very difficult to keep up.
    Have you seen Colin Firth’s speech on the Golden Globe awards? Watch it, he didn’t stammer…

  19. We have always been told that English have a cold character, they don’t express their feelings as Spanish or Italians do, and, there’s a moment in the film, when David embraces the Queen but she doesn’t, in front of the dead father, that made me think about it and impressed me so much. Do you think it’s true? I also remember that when Diana died (in 1991 I think), this was said too about the Queen’s behaviour to her grandchildren and she was harshly critizided.
    Carmen, you’re right, Guy Pierce (at least the name of the actor who plays David), despite he was born in England, but brought up in Australia, doesn’t have distinction. But, don’t you think it could have been done intentionally by the director to make us refuse him? because, how such a wayward and selfish man could king?
    (please, feel free to correct me if I’m not using the right words, from a gramatically point of view, and vocabulary)

  20. Marta, that impressed me, too, so cold-hearted, such distance with her own son, but then one can become like that if you have been told to control yourself all your live…or if you have suffered a great deal…

  21. Hi everyone!!
    It´s not that English have a cold character, but they shouldn´t show their feelings in front of anybody (it´s unforgivable if you belong to the Royal Family). Even Bertie tells David off when he starts crying in front of their dead fahcer. On the other hand, Bertie, as a father, behaves much more understanding and warm with his young daughters (we have to remember that his stammer comes from an unfortunate childhood with that horrible nurse).

    About Lionel and Bertie, I don´t know if they would have become so close if Lionel had been a British man instead of an Australian one. What do you think?
    Not only do they have a social breach, but they also have different duties. It is his wife that “frightens” Lionel. All of us have our own fears. But, a King can´t afford none.

    On the other hand, no matter how important a pupil is, a teacher MUST SET the rules. Otherwise, it wouldn´t work out fine.
    Roberto, the end MUST BE as it is!!! After suffering with Bertie, as Maria says, we deserve to share his triumph for first time!!! It´s patronizing, of course…but, he is The King and it´s the first time he gets over his stammer!!

  22. Eliza, you do not know how much I agree with you when you say that a teacher should, has to set the rules….
    I think that it is important that Lionel is Australian, so he has a different point of view from the English towards the Monarchy. Moreover I think that where teacher/student are concerned the teacher should always be “superior”!!!! How can you obtain respect from your pupils if the teacher has to bend his knee to them????? And, fortunately, The Duke of York bemoes Bertie for Lionel, while for the other speech therapists he was “your Royal Highness”…

  23. Is this really happening? I am all astonishment. This blog is definitely alive and, to be honest, I find your posts all quite interesting indeed. Thank you very much Eliza (Welcome!) for joining us and to Marta for still doing the effort to write. Actually, this is YOUR blog and we, María and I (with Carmen leading us) only try to encourage you to write and to improve your skills, and if we all can make it with a little bit of fun and entertaining, so much the better. I will tell you that in the beginning it used to take me a lot of time to write rather brief comments. I recognize it was hard to have to think for a while before being able to write down something properly in order to show what my mind really wanted to express. Do it as often as you can and you will see the reward sooner than you think. Besides, there was a time when I also realized that I was enjoying this; after all it is a way of writing about something you know (film or the novel you are reading), which makes it easier and not as boring as course books stuff. They are depressing, aren’t they?

    Marta your writing is good (in time you will be able to correct yourself) and I can see what you mean in your posts. Well done!

    Anyway, I think you all have a good point about the ending of the film, however I must keep insisting on mine (Carmen thanks for your complement but I’m afraid I am just an amateur): First of all, the acknowledgments, thankfulness, breakdown of social barriers, pride of what it is achieved and so on from both sides is continually shown throughout the whole film, especially when Colin Firth is being prepared to be crowned at Westminster. Am I wrong? Besides the main purpose of films (in my opinion) is to suggest by means pictures in motion what is going on behind actor’s countenance. Restraint and no dialogue (that’s why expert consider many silent films as the best ever made) should make the spectator feel as the character does. Everything else is redundant in my opinion. And I believe this is the case. A mutual look between Bertie and Lionel after the former’s speech would have sufficed to express what occurs afterwards.

    I think British people are extremely shy and reserved, reluctant to show their feelings outwardly (especially towards the outsider). It is a fact I’d dare say, however, I’m starting liking it. I don’t know why though…

    I also think the teacher is always the master and the student the apprentice, always. Some weeks ago, in Madrid, I was speaking with a friend of mine and this issue arose. He’s currently doing a Master Degree in UPM and sees that due to economic crisis, many people from different backgrounds (sharing same academic degrees though) and different ages are attending it too. The thing is that there are several students in their 40’s with many years of career experience who keep asking and contradicting the lecturer because they (probably) know more about the topic than the professor/teacher himself. My friend agreed with such an attitude as he told me that those people are not learners anymore and therefore, the professor can’t “cheat” them with his explanations. I can’t agree with that because even if those STUDENTS should know more about the matter, they are students and therefore, the teacher is in command. You don’t like it, all right, just leave or keep quiet.

  24. first of all, Roberto, congratulations on your AMAZING level of writing let me paste here one of your first comments in the woman in white to freshen up your memeory, what you were and what you are:

    “What I really don’t like about Sir Percival is that he’s too polite, trying to show kindness and good manners everytime he can. Doesn’t he to seem as insincere people making you feel a little suspicious, does he?”

    So ??? My God what you have achieved is incredible!!

    You have proved your point really well, acting is about looks and not just words, thus interchanging their looks could have been more powerful, but that would leave the spectator to guess what they were saying and it is so much easier to just say what you want the audience to understand clearly! moreover most people are not experts thus lots would miss the real meaning of the look, would miss that the barrier is surmounted and that they are level, that the ing has recognized Lionel´s value and gives Lionel his due…

    The story of the students has interested me much. You are right, I´m sorry that your friend fails to see this, a teacher who is not respected by his students cannot and will never be of any value to them. Of course there are teachers unworthy of calling themselves that name, but aren´t there unworthy people everywhere? It must be sad to find at the end of your career that what you have done has been valueless, but this poor teacher may not be in this case, he is probably suffering the frustation of his students…

  25. Hello, I’m the beginner blogger Emilia. A double blog is too much, but it will surely help us a lot improving our english level. I were very happy understanding the film without reading subtitles. The relation between The future King and the australian teacher, was really very british. It should be unacceptable for and english teacher, not as Carmen but as a native, to intimate with somebody of the Royal Family. But as the teacher is australian native, all is accepted.

  26. Waow! This is alive indeed!

    Marta, it is impressive how cold English people can be. They are. They can be nice, of course, but they don´t get involved. They are superficial in feelings towards… overseas people… At least, at the beginning. However, once you get on well with them, you can note very easily that there are not so many differences. It is just that they are not used to it, used to be welcoming and warm. Nevertheless, in Royalty, it must be different. They have been brought up to control their feelings not to show others their weaknesses. This is the case of the Prince. He couldn´t show Lionel his weakness as a king, but as Bertie. Eliza, under my point of view, the fact that Lionel is the son of an Austrilian brewer´s only provides himself with the courage of addressing the Prince at such a “liberal” way. But, I don´t think it would have been completely impossible, had Lionel been born in England… Do you really think it´s vital the fact that he is Australian for having achieved the King´s respect and approval, and later friendship? I don´t really think so…

    What I liked most in the film is that the King didn´t look for a friend -or, at least, he didn´t know he needed any-; he just found it. Unexpected things that come to one´s life.

    There must be always respect between pupils and teachers. Otherwise, there is but frustration. Frustrated teachers speaking to uninterested pupils. Can there be a bigger failure?

  27. Just now, a work mate of mine who is attending English lessons at the moment, has told me what happened yesterday in one of these lessons. The teacher, a middle aged woman, wanted the students to do an exam to prove their knowledge about any subject and one of the pupils claimed that she was very dissapointed as she thought the lessons were going to be more dynamic, that she was fed up with doing exams all the time, instead of talking about things and having fun. The teacher, according to my source, became red. She, according to my source, was weak… or… lacked self-confidence, so to say… The thing is that the teacher gave in and asked them to do some exercises of the coursebook. The students, shocked by the teacher’s change of thought and look, obeyed and started doing the exercises; however, the “claiming” pupil talked to her mates non-stop, instead. The teacher became even more red, and whispered a timid “silent, please”, according to my source, a couple of times. After a while, the “claiming” pupil stood up, complaining that she had been treated as a child and that she was leaving the classroom.
    The teacher, according to my source, was devastated.
    There is no treating people like this, honestly. First of all, people, teacher or pupil, should be honourable.

  28. Hello everybody, and forgive me for my disappearance(a migraine is the guilty). Well, I have to announce you that I am shocked due to the way Mr. Darcy has proposed Mrs. Elizabeth Bennet; what a heart-colded man, how many important details there are in the story… I know that there are a lot of things which I don’t grasp them (I know I’ll have to read the novel, I hope this summer), but it’s a matter of time. Some tips previous to see the series again?

  29. I’m back too, catching up as usual… (Sorry about that).

    Marta, try to read the novel if you can although I think the BBC series is quite loyal to Miss Austen’s text. Well, I do agree with you, however, could you please tell me your opinion about Lizzy’s attitude shown so far? Is she not a little bit annoying sometimes? Actually, don’t you think she is, somehow, unconscious of her own behaviour…?

    Emilia don’t give up, please, this might be hard at times but you will love it before finishing the term if you keep posting and your fluency (which is what matters) will improve exponentially.

    Well, what can I say Carmen? I was eager to learn and happened to meet you. I still remember how frustrated I felt by being unable to find someone who could really teach me English properly. There was no doing so though. Destiny, fate or whatever the reason made me join your class although the beginning was not easy at all. I used to go back home depressed and in low spirits and felt as if I only turned up to see a “proud” person “provoking” us. This is how I felt, to be honest. You can see Carmen what an ignorant (in every way) I was. Just a boy, not a man at all. How could I possible foresee that I would end up admiring both the teacher and (mainly) the woman beneath? Actually, it took me ages to locate when was the right time my mind discovered the treasure I had before me. It was at one of those extra classes we used to have on Fridays (what a pity not many people attended them! What a shame!) particularly when Carmen explained us Hamlet’s “to be or not to be” soliloquy. Impressed, thrilled, speechless and extremely merry I felt after evetntually understanding the meaning behind Shakespeare’s splendid words (I know it by heart since then. I think I mentioned this before. Sorry) And it was Carmen who has done it! It was her who opened some door within my, at the time, blind soul to a new world, the world I want to belong to. This might sound a little bit weird and sentimental, but it’s true. That was the point of no return…Thank God!

    Anyway, let’s go back to this interesting issue that teacher-student relationship is. I agree with which you are saying María and this bring to my mind something which happened to me here at the University during the last term:

  30. Beautiful words, Roberto! I agree that Friday lessons were THE BEST. Who would have imagined to have those masterclasses at a EOI? We were so lucky indeed…
    Roberto, I cannot read what happened to you at the Uni last term!!! I’m afraid you will have to write it again…
    Emilia, definetely, you have to read Pride and Prejudice.
    Anyway, did you know that Firth played also Jack in “The importance of being Earnest” in 2002? With Judi Dench as Mrs. Bricknell??? I am going to buy it!!!!

  31. It is something that somehow used also to occur in class with Carmen:

    Last term (as well as last year) a Spanish Lecturer has been teaching us two different modules. He was such a splendid both lecturer and person that I am very proud that he is Spanish. This is not a compliment at all because the rest of the class has a similar opinion about it; at least as a lecturer (I’m sorry for them because many haven’t met him outside class such as in office hours to ask doubts or anything regarding the course). I thank God that he has taught us two very important modules. Like Carmen, he makes it clear, easy and MOST OF ALL, he confers the student eagerness to learn, to achieve wisdom, to acquire excellence, to feel passion for what you are doing… in this case, enthusiasm for Civil Engineering. And like Carmen too (by the way, I’m trying to state similarities between both so that you may understand me properly, but you must know to that there is nobody like Carmen despite the fact that I esteem this person very much too…), you end up with a very high level.

    He used to talk to us about past experiences (either in class or in his offices hours), the opportunities we have before us to go beyond conventional pursuits, that we should not be conformist but proactive, motivated, zealous to learn, have anxieties, questions to do, and always with our minds open to wisdom and in search of outstanding targets (like Carmen does). That’s why he liked to interact with us, to provoke and make us react, think, feel (like Carmen does). However and as usual, only a few would show that they really care about it, conscious of the unique opportunity before us to achieve all mentioned above (like Carmen does). Thus, there was a time when he eventually gave up, frustrated and principally (in my opinion) dismayed by such lack of interest… He talked about all this himself to us all (not with these same words though. I’m just trying to portrait as faithfully as possible what happened) and I couldn’t but feeling ashamed of my mates (and of myself a little bit too as I used to interact with him but not as often as I’d have liked it), which reminded me Carmen’s distress when she tried to make us see all this as well. Although I considered it unfair in both cases because, what about those who are really passionate about it? I think I tried to say this aloud to Carmen in class long ago. So did I with this lecturer, in class too before the rest of students (his ultimatum was succeeded by a very long silence). I couldn’t bear it! I had to speak. This won’t do (thought I): ”Excuse me Dr Gil, what about those who really want you to keep teaching as you have been doing so far?” He answered: “Office hours”. I couldn’t believe it. Next week of lectures with him was absolutely depressing and unsubstantial. He used to arrived punctual at class, gave his speech to leave 55 afterwards without saying a word (well, he has manners and always greet us before and after finishing his classes). As he is a very reasonable person (like Carmen), myself and some other students tried to convince him that we wished him back, as he used to be. And eventually, he did because (as well as Carmen I’d dare say) he probably realized how vital for some of us his way of teaching (and the way he was, like Carmen) to keep going with motivation, willing to aim for the starts no matter how high (as it happened to me and more people when we studied at EOI, am I wrong?) and that he/she makes this be worth doing.

    I will just say that before the end of the term, he said farewell to us all and that it had been a pleasure to teach us. I felt like crying… losing again someone exceptional. I am ever so happy that it became a friendship with Carmen afterwards…

    What do you think about this long and maybe long and boring story?

  32. With all this I mean to say that, does it not the student play a role too? I believe that to have a proper teacher is essential (good for you if you find someone like Carmen), but is it not our responsability too, as students, to make the most of it? Is it not pititul to try to teach people and see that they don’t care at all no matter how good the content of what they are studying might be? Don’t we complain too much and too often when, actually, it is the student’s fault…?

  33. Roberto, you have shown us how much you look up to Dr. Gil, comparing his teaching to Carmen’s. I can see your enthusiasm. Actually, you are lucky as I haven’t met another like her… so far. The thing is that she came to us when we had almost given up our purpose in learning English; she was our saviour -this is a very little Romantic word! Sorry! Though, Baroness Schreider also used it in the Sound of Music when she was saying to the Captain that he had saved her from the bore of the spinsterhood, when she thought that she wouldn’t find love again, that the situation was hopeless-. Not only did Carmen speak English (not very usual at EOIs), but also made English lessons unmissable and memorable. I would level them with University lessons, masterclasses would be the proper word. She taught us everything. It was so easy to study English! I was, for the first time, motivated. I didn’t miss a lesson! I didn’t get ill once on purpose! Guys, I hope you can realize the teacher -the person- you have before you… Roberto and I realized. Aren’t we clever? We followed her through the door, and learnt. We are now just perfecting…
    I also see your frustration about others’ lack of interest, blindness. Some of our classmates were also blind, deaf, depressed -crazy?-, out of the point -“chapa la…”, remember?-, however, Carmen stuck -still sticks- to the daffodils, loyal, and stood by us, as Lionel stood by Berty.

  34. I’ve just recalled that, actually, it was the Captain who called the Baroness his saviour!!!

  35. Roberto, thank you for your nice words about learning and teaching (since you post here, I have learnt a lot of new words and useful expressions); I agree with you in some aspects; it is really a pity to me to see that, having had the possibility to ocupy a seat in the school, some of my mates don’t attend classes. I have been trying to enter the school for four years, without success, so, now that I’m here, I don’t want to waste the time.
    About the teachers; first of all, I admire and respect people who knows more than me, in every aspect of life, so I think that if you really want to learn something, you have to be humble and recognize your ignorance to be minded to follow the classes. It requires an effort, of course, but if you want something, it worths it.
    I’ve also lived an experience as yours, with the Spanish Lecturer during my studies at the University… and now that I remember that teacher (botanics was the subject), I think I did it well when I went to look for him to made him go to the classroom and teach us the day we were only five students waiting for him.
    Anyway, yes, I think Elizabeth’s attitude is a little bit annoying, so shallow-minded, and facile some times, obviously influenced by the general way of life for a 21 year old girl in those years. Fortunately, she realizes her attitude was wrong.
    (It was impossible for me to see the film after the series: the scenes are dirty, the actress doesn’t fit the story… and Mr. Darcy doesn’t worth a cent, compared to Mr. Firth).

  36. I completely agree with you Marta. Humility and respect, you have said. Very true. I´m sure -and glad- that you will profit your time at the EOI.

    I again agree with you that after the BBC series, the film is mediocre. Keira Knightley is an awful actress… As to Mr. Darcy, how could it be possible to remember the one in the film after having seen Mr. Firth? Olivia is a lucky lady…

  37. I’ve finally watched the film and I have to say it is a very good film. The acting is remarkable. I even liked Helena Bonham Carter. It is very nice to see her in a not histrionic character.

    It seems very clear that Collin Firth is going to win the Oscar.

  38. I wish you are right, Antonio. But you never know with the Oscars… Last year Pe was nominated for her role in Nine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Firth I think was nomitated last year also for A single man, but didn’t win. I don’t know if Americans are very happy giving the statue to an English gorgeous man…
    Carter is receiving the best of reviews actually. It seems to have been a very good performance of hers according to the experts. I liked her better in “A room with a view”… This weekend I will see “Howards End”.

  39. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-12444609

    Actually, she wanted to play George!!

  40. Maria, have you seen Goya Awards? The King’s Speech won and that night, the film got a lot of BAFTA: best film, best screenplay, actor (Colin Firth), supporting actress (Helena B. C), supporting actor (Geoffrey Rush).


    And if we talk about Oscar, being English, in my opinion, is not a problem to win a Oscar, remember Helen Mirren playing the Queen. I think Colin is going to be the winner this year.

    Talking about “A single man”, have you watched it? It’s a good film and Colin Firth is great. He got another BAFTA for that.

  41. Dear Antonio,
    Of course, I didn’t see Goya Awards (only the performance by Asier Etxeandia and others, which I found weak and boring), but I did see BAFTA awards! Colin always manages to make people laugh and smile… And did you hear Carter’s speech? She was brilliant, funny at the beginning and moving at the end, talking about her mum, as the best supporting wife ever, the same as the Queen mother herself. Rush wasn’t there to pick it up.
    I did see A single man. He can be a lovely gay too. It is amazing, isn’t it? And even as gay, gorgeous people fall for him, like the Spanish… Jon Kortajarena! It was a very good acting of his, as well, as usual, but I much prefer The King’s speech, because of the topics, the story itself. And his stammering is so naturally unnatural, as I remember Carmen said.
    Now, I cannot wait to see the Oscars! I believe he is going to win. You are right about Helen Mirren, or Kate Winslet… But, you never know with Americans…
    Off to supper…
    Bye bye

  42. And the winner is…

    The King’s Speech eventually made it and our Mr Darcy received his second consecutive award as best leading actor. Deserved and expected in my opinion. The film itself has won almost fort the most important categories; best picture, best director and best original script. If Elena had won it too (I’m glad she didn’t. I didn’t find her acting very convincing. I like her in “A room with a view” very much though), this film had become one among the few films in American Film history that achieves such a record.

    Anyway, this year I have no idea what the other contenders were, so I cannot say if this is really the best film of the year. It is true though, that Carmen and I liked it a lot at the time.
    By the way, I’m going to watch right now what Mr Firth said when collecting the Oscar…

  43. I liked the King’s speech and I think is a good film but last sunday I saw Black Swan and I have to say, in my opinion, it’s much better.
    Black Swan is one of the best films I’ve ever seen, simply spectacular, the acting, rhythm, tension, music… everything is perfect and Natalie Portman is amazing.

    Talking more about the Oscars, have you seen Dogtooth? it is a Greek film which was nominated as best foreign film. I saw it last year and I really liked, it is a bit weird and sometimes sordid but very good and shocking.

  44. Someone put the link of The King Firth´s speech when the Oscars, Roberto, on the Reading blog, just in case you want it. It was funny, as usual, and moving (only for Olivia, of course, who always takes all the lovely words).

    Antonio, I saw Black Swan too but I wouldn´t say it is better than the King´s speech, nor worse. I really liked it, honestly, but they are so different between each other that there is no comparing them. One tells the story about an unusual unexpected friendship, very realistic, very well told and acted; the other is about a ballerina, obssesed with two characters of the famous musical piece, the black and white swans. It is a psychological drama, difficult to understand -in the sense that you have to be mad to understand her-, but very well told and acted by Portman.

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