Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Movie Time! 'The Other Boleyn Girl'


You may proceed…

Director Justin Chadwick’s opulent historical drama stars Natalie Portman as Anne Boleyn and Scarlett Johansson as her sister, Mary—both beautiful, ambitious, and vying for the heart of powerful but intemperate King Henry VIII (Eric Bana). Though both women are the monarch’s mistresses, only one can become his queen consort—but at what cost? The supporting cast includes Kristen Scott Thomas and Jim Sturgess.

Okay, no one told me Jim Sturgess was in this movie. I love him so much!!

I really enjoyed this movie. I actually came close to crying (it’s really hard for me to cry during movies… only ‘Marley and Me’ accomplished that). I won’t tell you why exactly, but I can tell you that it has to do with Jim Sturgess… or rather, his character.

Natalie Portman is an amazing actress. She has really outdone herself in this role. In the beginning, she’s playful and flirtatious, but after they send her to France as a punishment (parents, you should be taking notes on this aspect) she becomes a completely different woman. She’s sophisticated and seductive—and she knows it! All of these qualities are being used to take revenge on her sister for breaking up her marriage with Henry Percy (he’s the reason she got sent to France and he was sent home to his betrothed) and sleeping with the King of England before she was able to.

When Anne Boleyn becomes the Queen of England (after Catherine of Aragon is removed from the throne), she is expected to give birth to a child that will ultimately be the king's heir. King Henry really wants a son of his to be the heir to the throne. The first child the King has with the Boleyn sisters is with Mary. But since they are not married, the son that Mary yields is not eligible for the throne. After Anne and King Henry are married, their first child is a girl, Elizabeth. Not a problem, Anne is still young and can bear another child—a son this time.


When she does conceive, she doesn’t go very long before she miscarries. She is devastated because she knows how mad the King will be. Since she wasn’t really showing that she was pregnant, she and Mary figure there is still time to conceive again. She plans to commit adultery. They then decide that that’s not such a great idea. They need to keep it between siblings: Anne, Mary, and George. In order to keep the secret between them, Anne asks her own brother, George (Jim Sturgess), so “lie down with her.” Initially, he agrees… reluctantly, but he agrees. When they get to the bed, George decides that this isn’t right and he can’t do it. Luckily, Anne doesn’t force it.

This is where things start going downhill. I don’t want to tell you anything else. I probably just told you anywhere from thirty to forty-five minutes of the movie (if even that long). It is so intense! If I didn’t tell you, this might have been an awkward review for you to read.

Basically, the Boleyn’s are abusing marriage to improve their status as a whole. Personally, it’s sickening. This whole shebang was started because the father of the Boleyn girls and their Uncle started this whole thing by asking Anne to try and get into bed with the King because his marriage with Catherine of Aragon was so strained due to her last stillborn child.

This whole movie is one big roller-coaster and it’s amazing! I really need to read the book. Actually, I should have read it before watching the movie… too late for that now. If you’re walking by your local movie rental place one day and you really want something good and heart-wrenching to watch, pick up this movie.

However, if you’re not comfortable with *extremely sentimental instances in movies, I strongly suggest that you don’t pick this up. ‘Up’ is a very good movie. It’s not just for children! And you can watch it instantly on Netflix! So you don’t even have to leave your house!

I should have another movie review for you in about a day or two, depending on how long it takes me to write it. It will be about ‘Inception.’ I’m very excited for that!

Thanks for reading!

--Jude Rosenberg

*Note my effort to keep this as family-friendly as possible J

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