Film review, by Jason Day, of The Queen’s Corgi about the adventures of Rex, Queen Elizabeth II’s spoiled, ‘top dog’ corgi who is thrown out of Buckingham Palace by his nemesis Charlie.
Rex (voiced by Jack Whitehall) is Queen Elizabeth II’s (Julie Walters) ‘top dog’, the favourite of her four loyal corgis. He is imperious, lazy and manipulative, but his peers put up with his preening and attention-hogging.
But after President Trump (John Culshaw) visits and Rex refuses to cement a canine special relationship with Trump’s own corgi, the ensuing diplomatic fall out leaves Rex out in the cold, figuratively and literally. Betrayed by his pal Charlie (Matt Lucas), Rex ends up in a kennel and must man-up to get back to his beloved Queenie and take his new love, mongrel Wanda (Sheridan Smith), with him.
Review, by @Reelreviewer
I don’t usually pay too much attention to BBFC film ratings, but the PG certificate that has been slapped on this animated film – clearly aimed at summer holiday kiddies – by the British censor made my ears prick up.
“…innuendo and violence” – really? In a cartoon about Queenie’s pooch?!
Now, I’m no prude and love a bit of sexual innuendo – if there’s a Carry On showing across the TV network, I’m rooted to the gogglebox – but even I winced at the fruity adult jokes and dialogue.
Most of this happens during the overtly sexual scenes involving the licentious, Texan corgi Mitzy (voiced by Sarah Hadland), whose comic attempts to seduce an unwilling Rex teeter over into stalking.
She says “Take me, stud muffin”, “Want to play rough?” and “Are you playing hard to get?”, encouraged by her owner, visiting POTUS Donald Trump, who tells her to “Get some puppy”.
She holds poor Rex sexual hostage in her pink pram, the carriage rocking and the suspensions squeaking on over time.
Later, when Rex first sees and falls in love with the wonderful Wanda, she trills like a sultry nightclub singer and wiggles and wafts her tail past his nose.
Along with the quite scary scene in which Rex nearly drowns, I caught myself thinking “Time, writers, please! There are children watching!”
The film has some very cute, in-Palace visual gags. The corgis all sleep on their own mini thrones. Prince Philip wears Union Jack slippers. Queenie has a shelf stuffed with photos of her and her dogs. Trump can’t stop taking selfies, saying “Cheese steak!” as he takes the snap (Queenie later calls him ‘Dorald’ and you can’t quite tell whether this is a slip or deliberate).
I’m not a fan of animated movies, but with its humour and excellent voice acting (Culshaw and Stephenson, professional mimics, take all the plaudits) this is one to see, although it might be more for parents than the kids.
Cast & credits
Directors: Vincent Kesteloot, Ben Stassen. 1hr 25mins/85mins. Belga Productions/King Dom Productions/The Montecito Picture Company/nWave Pictures. PG
Producers: Ben Stassen.
Writers: Rob Sprackling, Johnny Smith.
Music: Ramin Djawadi.
Sets: Alexandre Blain, Sylvie Lacroix.
Jack Whitehall, Sheridan Smith, Ray Winstone, Matt Lucas, Julie Walters, Tom Courtenay, Jon Culshaw, Sarah Hadland, Debra Stephenson.