Imelda Staunton and
Dominic West in The Crown
The Crown Season Five | Cast: Imelda Staunton, Elizabeth Debicki, Dominic West | Writer: Peter Morgan | Language: English | Netflix
The metaphors are everywhere. The Britannia is a creature of another age and needs multiple repairs. The Queen of England’s TV is old and gets only the BBC, which is struggling to shed its “auntie” image. The Queen seems out of sorts, though as her husband says she never stops, never complains and never puts a foot wrong. It’s the most turbulent time in recent history for the House of Windsor, and the head of its household is disappointed. Its nothing compared to what will hit her in the ensuing years captured in season five of The Crown, and given the recent wave of adulation surrounding her passing, it seems almost heresy to think that there was a time Queen Elizabeth was accused of outstaying her welcome. This season focuses on the troubles of the House of Windsor in the 1990s, with a newly confident Princess Diana taking on Prince Charles’ private scorn for her. From the admission of adultery by him on TV in 1994 to Princess Diana’s controversial interview to Martin Bashir, this season is full of wounds which last to this day. Nowhere are they greater than in Charles and Diana’s children. What did Philip Larkin write: “They f— you up/your mum and dad/They don’t mean to/but they do.” Elizabeth Debicki is a dead ringer for Diana and Dominic West contorts his face often enough to pass off as the future King. But it is the sad figure of the Queen, played by Imelda Staunton, as someone past her prime, that haunts you.
Why watch it: Because The Crown is a gift to storytelling that just keeps giving
Gargi | Cast: Sai Pallavi, Kaali Venkat | Director: Gautham Ramachandran | Language: Tamil | SonyLiv
Gargi is the story of a daughter fighting for justice for her father, an elderly watchman, who is the fifth accused in the gangrape of a minor. It is the kind of plot, which in inept hands could become a sordid disaster. But Gautham Ramachandran’s Gargi gets nearly everything right. It lays bare the ugly truths of media trials, the lawyers, police, and class differences. Sai Pallavi is stellar as the daughter, Gargi, a teacher who is planning her wedding but then finds herself running from courts to police stations. Kaali Venkat is convincing as the goodhearted but inexperienced lawyer who takes up the case. The film never flags, the end might seem predictable, but is far from expected. This could have been a grisly film, instead it is all heart.
Why watch it: To understand the gap between the truth and perceptions