I was flipping through Netflix a few days ago and came across this gem, A Royal Affair (En Kongelig Affære).
It tells the true story of when Caroline Mathilde (the sister of King George III of Great Britain) married King Christian VII of Denmark.
A sadly familiar theme in royal history, King Christian suffered from ’bouts of mania.’ Thus leaving the young Queen to a new country, language, and mentally unstable husband.
The King finds friendship in his new physician, Struensee who came from Germany and influenced the King with his ideas of enlightenment and new laws for the country of Denmark. Struensee then fell in love with the lonely Queen after the birth of her first child, the future King Frederik VI.
The court grew more and more in contempt of Struensee’s influence on the King, eventually convincing the King of the Queen and Struensee’s ‘plans to kill the King.’ (Of course a lie.)
During this time the Queen gives birth to a daughter, which is actually Struensee’s child. Soon after, the former court staged a coup and deported the Queen to Germany, and executed Struensee.
The story is told from the perspective of Queen Caroline Mathilde, as she writes the story to have handed down to her children.
I love Denmark though am admittedly ignorant about its history. Since having au paired in Northern Germany in a town an hour from the Danish border, (next to the town where King Christian III is said to have died, I read last night) my fascination in Denmark has grown exponentially. So it’s no surprised that I love this film.
The story in itself is captivating, and when you add the actors and the detailed scenes and costumes, it’s a beautiful piece. I love that it was done in Danish (with subtitles) and they stayed true to the period and location, not getting to ‘Hollywood,’ if you will. It’s how I wish Marie Antoinette had been done, to be honest.
If you are interested in royals, enjoy period pieces, and love history you’ll love this movie. I rarely buy movies, but this is one I am adding to my collection.
Have you seen the film? What’d you think?