A Royal Affair Reviews

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Lewis Beale
News & Observer, Raleigh, NC
October 1, 2014

The volatile mix of sex and politics is at the core of the sumptuously produced Danish film A Royal Affair, which, by underplaying its combustible material, fails to do full justice to it.

Full Review | Original Score: B
John Hanlon
Big Hollywood
June 30, 2013

A well-crafted drama about three flawed individuals who changed the course of history in Denmark.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
Brian Gibson
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
May 6, 2013

Out of some dry lines, Shakespearean allusions, and its playing with statecraft as stagecraft, this slowly emerges as more than just some ruffle-collared, frilly-cuffed throne-porn-there's a sharp quill and glinting eye behind the gilt-edged curtain.

Chris Sawin
February 8, 2013

The performances are powerful and the set pieces are exquisite, but the conclusion will leave you feeling enormously agitated thanks to what seems like the encouragement of thickheadedness.

Full Review | Original Score: 7/10
Emanuel Levy
February 6, 2013

Denmark's Oscar nominee is a fact-inspired historical melodrama, but it's intriguing, elegantly shot, and well acted by the actors forming the romantic triangle.

Full Review | Original Score: B
Chris Knight
National Post
February 5, 2013

The heady mix of power, politics, ideology, romance and corsets is a rare, royal feast.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
Katherine Monk
February 5, 2013

It's all high-drama and in the hands of director Arcel, every little knot in this detailed needlepoint is handled to period perfection.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Mike Scott
January 25, 2013

A sumptuous slice of period drama and real-life palace intrigue.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Sarah Boslaugh
January 19, 2013

...a splendid demonstration of the old adage that political films are really not about the time they are set in, but the time in which they are made.

Full Review | Original Score: 7/10
Connie Ogle
Miami Herald
Top Critic
January 18, 2013

The film ends not on a happy note, naturally, but on a moment of hope. Love may not conquer all, but it has a power all its own.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic
January 17, 2013

Although the brazen lovers, bellicose ministers and backstabbing handmaidens are familiar elements, the film is so handsomely mounted that we happily endure the ride until the turning of the screws in the tragic last act.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Michael Nordine
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic
January 2, 2013

Perhaps there's only so much to be done with a costume drama about illicit affairs and would-be coups.

Brent Simon
December 12, 2012

Gorgeously photographed if familiarly constructed, it's more or less catnip for urban foreign film aficionados and the NPR set, breathing life into period piece lust and intrigue.

Full Review | Original Score: B-
Robert Roten
Laramie Movie Scope
December 10, 2012

The characters in the story are interesting, even if they are not quite as interesting as the historical people on which the characters in this film are based.

Full Review | Original Score: B
Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing
December 7, 2012

In the immortal words of King Louis XVI -- or was it Mel Brooks? -- it's good to be the king.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
Top Critic
December 7, 2012

What a piece of work is this historical drama.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Lawrence Toppman
Charlotte Observer
December 7, 2012

Arcel directs with sympathy for all three of the main characters and doesn't make pure villains of the others.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Kimberley Jones
Austin Chronicle
December 7, 2012

It is certainly competent, lovely to look at, but leaves little lasting impression.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Dan Lybarger
KC Active
November 29, 2012

Sometimes falling in love can really change the world or at least the fate of a nation.

Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
Claudia Puig
USA Today
Top Critic
November 29, 2012

A Royal Affair covers plenty of stately ground, all in good time.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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