Jan 22, 2013

En kongeling affaire, A Royal Affair, 2012

En kongeling affaire, A Royal Affair, 2012
Director: Nikolaj Arcel
Cast: Alicia Vikander, Mads Mikkelsen, Mikkel Boe

Stage: Local Theatre Dvor

En kongeling affaire in short: A young queen, who is married to an insane king, falls secretly in love with her physician - and together they start a revolution that changes a nation forever. 

Preps: Only a good recommendation from a person I admire and respect. Which is good enough for me. I am aware this is an european piece, because theatre Dvor wouldn't screen it otherwise. Plus, I am in royal mood to see it. 

Reality: Enlightenment is a period which is both, sacred to modern thinkers and furthermore, one of more important periods of world's history. People died in that period for being different, thinking different and not being just a part of the holy sheep crowd. It is inspiring to see on screen, how Nikolaj Arcel saw this happening in the danish royal society.
The movie will take you through the dreadful time of being forced to a marriage, just because your parents thought it was a good match. At that point of time, it was given to you at birth, who is your circle and who are you supposed to marry. Love wasn't a matter of opinion, but a matter of intelligence and money. And careful choice of the parents, some sort of agreement. In a way you didn't have the choice, therefore many affairs like the one depicted, happened for sure.
The court in this case has a witty, yet looney king, for whom the history doesn't know even now, what his real problem was. Nor does the movie suppose or predict why the weird acts happened or what was wrong with him.
The german protagonist of enlightenment movement comes and dazzles the king. Becomes his so called friend, adviser, closest person the king can relate to. Soon enough the queen is bedazzled as well, making strong moves and committing her heart to Struensee.
Now, Struensee has many enemies in court. They don't want him there as he poses a threat to existing rules, existing ways things work. Enlightenment meant bringing reason to things instead of god. Meant progress, new ways to do things, new inspiration. The ideas behind it were more progressive than most of the rulers could take at that time. This is why many of the protagonists were beheaded at some given point of time and in this piece, we definitely see the cruel side of the coin. However, things moved in many countries because these weren't just a few of individuals, this was indeed a movement. You will for sure see, how tuff it must have been, bringing a bit of difference in every day life, many small steps towards a greater cause - progress in general.

The hidden "holy" background, many church protagonists, fought severely against this plague and called it devil deeds. You will be amazed how well the movie will drag you right in the centre of this happening. I am quite sure this story could be depicted in the same way at many national courts all over Europe. However, we can thank today to many poets, writers, progressive people that made some of things we take today for granted, real.

The love story is inspiring and will make you believe. The relationship Sturgess and queen Caroline develop, seems so real you will cry at the end. You will be stunned by the ruthless ways court people develop just to destroy the love and progressive ideas. Until the end, until death, until all means are gone.
Another thought I had while I was watching this piece. Looking at that time and thinking of it, it would seem that now we should be happier because we are liberal and have all the means that we can be or relate with anyone we like. Yet it seems we are still unhappy and unsatisfied. Unfortunately we cannot have the excuse these people had. They were forced into living lives they often didn't want. We don't have the pressure they had. Still, I cannot say we are much more happy than they were, merely in love and choosing a spouse sense.

My personal rating: 8,5 (the nomination for Oscar well deserved, a sparkling love story and inspiring age you will think about long after the movie is over).

A Royal Affair on IMDB
Royal on official page of Kino Dvor

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