The next feature film in the Opera House Cinema Series is “Victoria & Abdul,” starring Academy Award-winner Dame Judi Dench and Ali Fazal. The extraordinary true story of a unexpected friendship in the later years of Queen Victoria’s remarkable rule, it will be screened on Sat., Nov. 11 and Tues., Nov. 14, at 7:30 p.m.
When Abdul Karim (Fazal), a young clerk, travels from India to participate in the Queen Victoria’s (Dench) Golden Jubilee, he is surprised to find favor with the Queen herself. As the Queen questions the constrictions of her long-held position, the two forge an unlikely and devoted alliance with a loyalty to one another that her household and inner circle all attempt to destroy. As the friendship deepens, the Queen begins to see a changing world through new eyes and joyfully reclaims her humanity.
Roger Moore, in Movie Nation, calls the film “a bloody delightful romp.” Peter Howell, in the Toronto Star, calls it “a film of solid craftsmanship led by another royally magnificent performance by Judi Dench.” Steven Whitty, in the Newark Star Ledger, says “the idea that two people – separated by class, a creed, a continent and half a century – could still share such a perfect bond of innocent friendship seems like an awfully important one.” Rex Reed, in the New York Observer, says “Judi Dench can do no wrong, and playing Queen Victoria for the second time in the richly satisfying Victoria and Abdul is an acting lesson par excellence that proves how rapturous it is to watch this great artist do everything right!” Rated PG-13 (for some thematic elements and language, “Victoria & Abdul” runs one hour, 51 minutes.
The Opera House Cinema Series is sponsored by Lake Shore Savings Bank. Tickets are available at the door for $7 (adults), $6.50 (seniors & Opera House members) and $5 (students) the night of each screening. A book of 10 movie passes is available for $60 at the door or online at www.fredopera.org. For more information, call the Opera House Box Office at 716-679-1891.
The Opera House is equipped with individualized closed captioning headsets for the deaf as well as with assistive listening headsets for the hearing-impaired. Simply request one from any usher or Opera House staff member.
The 1891 Fredonia Opera House is a member-supported not-for-profit performing arts center located in Village Hall in downtown Fredonia. For a complete schedule of events, visit www.fredopera.org.