July 4th, 2012

A Royal Affair (En kongelig affære)

Review by Helen Francois

Costumes, historical content, Chamber Music, love, a bit of sauciness and some sutble humour in places as well as stunning scenery. This was a film that I found extremely watchable. You don't need to know any Danish history to understand the background. Europe is entering The "Enlightment" era and this is pre French Revolution. References to Voltaire are made in the film and King Christian is excited when he receives a letter from Voltaire congratulating him on the changes in the laws he made.

Alcia Vikander (Queen Caroline) is stunningly beautiful and acts brilliantly. Mikkel Boe Folsgaard (King Christian) plays his madness perfectly, not at all over the top and at some points, I wondered, was he really mad or was he perhaps a bit clever by hiding behind a facade of madness? That is my personal opinion though. Mads Mikkelsen is very broody and pensive but also a likeable character. The evil step-mother, The Dowger Queen, wants Christian off the throne so that her son, his brother, the Heir Presumptive will take the crown and her side kick, a clergyman is a tad sinister!

There is a sad ending to this film, as Denmark socially regressed and the power struggle between the King, his Step Mother and the Council is tense. There is a slightly more hopeful footnote at the end of the film though.

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