What is the fascination with having an elaborate or colourful wallpapers and painted walls behind the main characters in emotional scenes?
It gets annoying that the decor gets as much attention from the camera as the actors. This was the same trend in Sofia Coppola's "Marie Antoinette".
Has Hollywood gotten over it?
Are you for real? When one makes a period movie it's usually a good idea to have period furniture and surroundings to make it seem more believable. The King's Speech was about the British royal family and having seen photos of Buckingham Palace it's quite apparent that everything is ornate and colourful.
I remember hearing at the time that KINGS'S SPEECH used the same sets that were constantly used in porno films. It's understandable since KS was a low-budget film, only $15 million.
That particular set in TKS was most likely used because the wallpaper symbolized the King's inner torment. It's hardly period.
Oddly, the same set was used in a pornographic movie.
Arty?! Oh, dear.
I was referring to the wallpaper and painted wall in Lionel's office, not the furniture.
Firth is ornately seated, but the stripped away walls underline the messy uncovering process Geoffrey Rush used to treat The King. For a while, Firth was helpfully untrapped by trappings.
Production design is a crucial part of the success and pleasure of films. I can't recall a DL thread on favourite film interiors. Hint.
I don't know which is more sad/hilarious: that OP fails to understand the importance of production design in a film, or that he thinks The King's Speech is an "arty movie"!