The Duke is an old-fashioned British comedy caper that is plainly lovely and a joy. Based on a true story, it’s an account of the 1961 theft of a Goya painting from the National Gallery, stars Jim Broadbent and Helen Mirren, and is directed by Roger Michell (of Notting Hill fame). Many films have all their ducks in a row yet are somehow disappointing, but this is perfect, capturing the spirit and joie de vivre of the old Ealing comedies. I could probably watch it all day every day for the rest of my life.
Broadbent plays Kempton Bunton, a 57-year-old, working-class Newcastle taxi driver — although he has trouble holding down any kind of job — who has aspirations to be a playwright. We first meet him putting his latest play in the post to the BBC.