VICTORIA & ABDUL (PG)
DAME JUDI QUEENS UP SPOTLESSLY AGAIN, US, 111 MIN
Dame Judi Dench is a marvel of precision acting, however, we should remind ourselves this gem won’t be sparkling on our screens forever. As Dench has played the famously long-serving British monarch before, this biopic set in the ruler’s twilight years should be a walk in the park. Nevertheless, Dench sets a cracking clip, forcing the rest of the movie to keep up with her impish, sly and open-hearted performance. This is the story of Queen Vic’s unusual relationship with Abdul Karim (played by Bollywood star Ali Fazal), a lowly clerk from India who rose through the ranks of the royal household to become her closest confidante. Dench and Fazal are very endearing, particularly when drawing disapproving stares from the stuffiest shirts inside the palace.