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The Other Boleyn Girl is based on a wideyl inaccurate and absurd historical novel by the otherwise gifted writer, Phillipa Gregory. It is about Mary Boleyn, Anne Boleyn's older sister, who had a brief affair with Henry VIII before Anne captivated the king and convinced him to divorce his first wife, the Spanish Katherine of Aragon.

The movie, like the book, tries to make Mary, an unimportant and rather silly and trampy girl, into a likeable character by blackening the image of her more (in)famous and infinitely more facinating sister. Gregory perpetuates the wild myths and slanders that have dogged Anne throughout history during her lifetime and long afterward, even though most modern historians have dismissed or disproven them... and then presents them as historical facts. The movie is even more annoying in that the characters frequently speak into the camera, "revealing their thoughts" to the viewers... a jarring and bizarre directoral decision, because I'm pretty sure film cameras weren't invented in the 16th century. But is that being too picky?

Bad acting from usually gifted actresses is likely due to the appauling script. While no movie really comes close to giving audiences a real glimpse into the character of Anne Boleyn, this one is much worse than most.... don't even think about renting this one... trust me!
Incestuous royal romp.

READ REVIEW HERE
I have many griefs with this movie, so let me break them down.

First, the movie is a huge departure from the book. Huge. So much so that I think it warrents another title. Maybe "The Boleyn Sisters." I don't know. But to have the same title as the book and not carry any of the themes or ideals with it isn't right. One of the best aspects of the book is that you really connect to Mary and her storyline. You share the ups and downs of her story. To me, this was more about Anne Boleyn than Mary. Both sisters come off in a very different light than the book depicts. That to me, makes it an entirely different story.

The cinematography was just horrible. In such a rich and presitigious age, I feel that it could have been much more beautiful and majestic looking. The camera is shaking during parts and frankly, I don't understand some of the camera angles during scenes. And I say that being a photographer. It could have been carried off in a much different manner and produced a higher quality film.

The story itself was jumpy. There was no flow to the storyline. Perhaps that is because they butchered the basis of the book so bad they had to at least show the few main scenes that had to happen. Mary's romance, Anne's Romance, and then Anne's execution. Instead of flowing and telling the story, the movie actually jumps for scene to scene and forces the story to happen.

Bodice-ripper? Not even close. There are 3 big name, attractive movie stars in this book. The love scenes and passion could have been scaled way up. You don't feel any sort of love and affection between Henry and Mary and then you don't feel sexual tension between Henry and Anne. There are only two instances were you feel the Anne actually even stepping up and being provacative with her actions and words. And then suddenly both Anne and the King say they are "equals." Very strange and feels out of place.

I can't say anything about the acting. I found it to be pretty good but the movie unfortunately, can't survive without a more concise storyline. I'm more surprised that the 3 stars signed onto the movie. But, without them, it would be straight to DVD or a TV non- HBO mini-series.
This was a decent period piece. Eric Bana did a wonderful job as a young King Henry. You can even imagine him growing into the much older and fatter Henry that we all know and love outside of the Twentieth Century youth-obsessed versions epitomized by Jonathan Rhys Meyers in the Showtime TV-show, The Tudors. Scarlett Johansson did Mary Boleyn justice while Natalie Portman simply infused women's live into her role as Anne Boleyn making Eric Bana's Henry VIII as a wimpy character simply defined by his lust for Anne. Historically, his desire for Anne was much more complicated than what was portrayed. It was almost an insult to my intelligence how easy it was for Henry to dismiss his religion based on Anne's whims and his own sexual desires, too easy that is. Otherwise, this was a fast-paced movie and I nearly did not realize how the two hours simply went by. Jim Sturgess, as the Boleyn brother named George, also portrayed his character as a complete wimp, when indeed some suggest that the historical George may have been a homosexual and thus another sort of sexual deviant for the time period. It was not simply how she said, he said would have played out. An accusation taken so seriously by the King without any evidence seems a bit odd in the circumstance after all that had taken place. Check out the movie, but understand that the bantor was simply that. This movie makes a lot of suggestions that the viewer just has to accept. Although I never take these movies as complete historical, it would have been nicer if the movie seemed a bit more historical.
This weekend my wife and I went to see 'The Other Boleyn Girl." Despite the ratings on Rotten Tomatoes this movie is excellent. All actors gave a wonderful performance. Particularly intriguing performance by Natalie Portman. She was exceptional. Her emotions came out on each scene as it should have been portrayed. We also watched this season "There Will Be Blood" and could not even remember the movie. You walked away wondering - huh? With "The Other Boleyn Girl" you left with happy and sad emotions both pulled.
I am most always disappointed with a movie when I have read the book beforehand so I knew what to expect yesterday when my husband and I went to see "The Other Boleyn Girl." Not only was this movie a disapointment from the book, it was a bad movie all the way around. I don't imagine Philippa Gregory is too happy to have her name strung along behind this movie. This movie was a sappy mess
:) Theatre


My Review: This is fiction - it's not historically correct. You go to this movie for the entertainment value, not for historical accuracy, although I agree that if the movie was to be made at all, it could have been more accurate. However, it was entertaining. The lead characters were fine, but Natalie Portman stole the show. The costumes, sets and locations were wonderful. It was an enjoyable two hours as it had all the elements of a good story: intrigue, treachery, suspense, sex, loyalty, deceit, and murder.

SYNOPSIS:
Based on the best selling novel by Philippa Gregory, The Other Boleyn Girl is an engrossing and sensual tale of intrigue, romance, and betrayal set against the backdrop of a defining moment in history. Two sisters, Anne (Natalie Portman) and Mary (Scarlett Johansson) Boleyn, are driven by their ambitious father and uncle to advance the family's power and status by courting the affections of the King of England (Eric Bana). Leaving behind the simplicity of country life, the girls are thrust into the dangerous and thrilling world of court life -- and what began as a bid to help their family develops into a ruthless rivalry between Anne and Mary for the love of the king. Initially, Mary wins King Henry's favor and becomes his mistress, bearing him an illegitimate child. But Anne, clever, conniving, and fearless, edges aside both her sister and Henry's wife, Queen Katherine of Aragon, in her relentless pursuit of the king. Despite Mary's genuine feelings for Henry, her sister Anne has her sights set on the ultimate prize; Anne will not stop until she is Queen of England. As the Boleyn girls battle for the love of a king -- one driven by ambition, the other by true affection -- England is torn apart. Despite the dramatic consequences, the Boleyn girls ultimately find strength and loyalty in each other, and they remain forever connected by their bond as sisters.
See it for the pure emotions that these amazing actors show on screen and somehow inspire in your own heart as you watch an incredible plot unfold. Admittedly, the plot unfold hurriedly at certain points, but it allows more time for the worthwhile parts - the clashes, interactions, and conflicts between characters. Natalie, Scarlett, and Eric are at their best here.

This movie will leave you feeling blown away, one by the emotions, two by its reality. Every moment is intense, and it carries along quickly enough to always keep you holding your breath in concern for one of its characters. Although there are two divisive sides in the story, you cannot help but cheer for both and lament that only one can conquer. It is a movie to witness innocence and raw ambition, and the responsibility/power/horrors of love.
'The Other Boleyn Girl'
Directed by Justin Chadwick



Nothing about The Other Boleyn Girl feels original or freash. We all know the story about King Henry's desire for a male heir and his struggle to do so. In this case, two sisters compete against their will to be the mistress turned wife that can bring the King a son, and their family wealth. Unfortunately this is an easy, safe, and predictable movie that for lack of a better term, is kind of boring.

I just felt kind of like I was waiting for the inevitable to happen, and that lets in a lack of suspense. Natlie Portman and Scarlett Johansson are fine as the two female leads, but its Eric Bana who pretty much underwhelms throughout. I don't think Bana has ever really been impressive except for his role in Munich.

Anyways, betrayal and family greed lead to a game of musical chairs between King Henry's mistresses, but the whole thing is meant to get us to say, "Oh, how awful!". Which it is, but this is a part of history that we're all too familiar with.

The Other Boleyn Girl tries to impress us with wideshots of the English Channel and extravagant costumes, but in all honesty, that's just not enough now-a-days. I hears someone say after the movie, "It was really well done". But I hate that argument these days. Pretty much every movie that comes out every single week has a nice, healthy budget behind it. Even TV miniseries' can afford large, beautiful, intimidating costumes. It's what you do apart from those other films that seperates you.

In this case, its being compared to the other countless period piece movies, and it just doesn't do enough to seperate itself in this day-and-age where people seem to have a short leash for the genre.

Grade: C+



I just kept wanting to scream to the women in the theater what REALLY happened in the book. I really, truthfully HATED this movie. The book was AWESOME, I read it several times and am re-reading it again. They left out SO much of the book! And I read a review that said Phillipa Gregory knew they were going to tone the movie down a little bit...but for me, they really didnt. They took it up a notch, in fact (at least in one part). For instance, I have no memory of Anne being raped by King Henry in the book, and in the movie he rips her skirt up and starts poundin' away! And yes, they cut out that George and Anne ACTUALLY SLEPT TOGETHER....hence the monster child Anne gives birth to later...they also cut out that Mary had TWO (2) children with the King; Mary was married to William when she was eleven, while Anne was in the French Court; Mary is the Queen's favorite "lady-in-waiting; Anne comes back, falls in love with Henry Percy, marries him, and is banished to HEVER, the family castle; while Anne is at Hever, Mary seduces and falls in love with the King; Mary gets preggo, Anne comes back to court to help her and to keep the Kings eye on the Boleyn/Howard Family, Mary has baby GIRL named Catherine, Mary goes back the King, but he is Anne's during the day and Mary's at night; Mary becomes pregnant again, has a BOY Henry. By this time the King is enchanted with Anne, but still looks to Mary for comfort.

I'm tired of bitching now...but seriously, they didn't even cut this much out of the effing Harry Potter books.

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