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Discussion of Movie “The Queen”

The Queen is the movie directed by Stephen Frears, depicting the events and behavior of the British royal family during the week following the death of Princess Diana. This film tells about the decisions of the Queen, as well as English patrials’ grief and discontent. The current situation threatened the reputation of the sovereign, the entire royal family, and the throne. If the social contract is defined as a mutual agreement between the citizens and the state, then the citizens of the United Kingdom are poorly served by their head of state.

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The events depicted in the film are actual historical events that accompanied the tragic death of Princess Diana. The loss of the “People’s Princess” was a shocking event for the British people who respected, truly loved, and extolled her. Citizens awaited an official statement from the royal family, flag-low mourning at the royal palace, and a dignified funeral ceremony for the Princess. However, the royal family did not react to Diana’s death, and the Queen refused to comment or organize the farewell, as the Princess was no longer part of the royal family due to her divorce from Prince Charles. Thus, Queen Elizabeth poorly served the citizens of the United Kingdom; moreover, she appeared tyrannical since she ruled in her interest rather than in the people’s interest.

In the movie, one of the most decisive roles is assigned to another government representative: Tony Blair, the newly elected prime minister. In a way, the prime minister was contrasted with the Queen and portrayed as a good sovereign. Blair heard the people and understood what they demanded and why, so he repeatedly asked Queen Elizabeth to change her mind. Moreover, Blair’s politics opposed the monarchy in general because his campaign was focused on society, justice, and progress. On the other hand, the British monarchy is a conservative regime led by traditions and strict rules, with no exceptions.

In this context, British society desired to break the social contract between the monarchy and the Queen. The combination of these factors led to the fact that the reign of Elizabeth suffered a severe crisis and was under the threat of destruction after the death of Princess Diana. The sovereign showed that she lacks empathy, manners, and mutual understanding with her subjects and that she was not ready to give up her traditional principles and royal protocols despite the outrage of society.

Nonetheless, in the end, Elizabeth, not wanting to completely lose her popularity, the respect of society, and the crown, changed her views and made concessions to society. This transformation demonstrates the qualities of a good sovereign, able to adapt to the needs of the people. In violation of royal protocol, the Queen approves of the funeral ceremony at Buckingham Palace and makes a public statement regarding the passing of Princess Diana.

This film shows the relationship between the ruler and the civilian population, which can radically change in a provoking situation. The Queen portrayed how interconnected the head of the state and society were and how public sentiment could jeopardize the Queen’s rule. Violation of the social contract and refusal to listen to the people could lead to the eradication of the monarchy in Great Britain. When such a situation arises, no “royal protocols” should be a priority; on the contrary, the ruler’s correct behavior would help achieve unity with the people and strengthen the position of the royal court.

However, Elizabeth’s actions led to the separation of the royal family from society, demonstrating the ruler as devoid of empathy and the ability to accept the grief of her people. The Queen was guided exclusively by her personal and royal interests, neglecting her citizens and their incredibly tragic loss. In the end, the Queen demonstrated that she was a worthy head of state by satisfying the needs of the people and preventing the fall of the monarchy in Britain.

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