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The Other Boleyn Girl

Two sisters divided for the love for a king.

Ravishing frocks and heaving bosoms are the main constituents of The Other Boleyn Girl, an entertaining bodice ripper lightly disguised as historical fiction, a pitched battle between lush romanticism and vicious politicking. The frocks and bosoms in question belong to Anne and Mary Boleyn (Natalie Portman and Scarlett Johansson), bitter rivals for the affection of Eric Bana's brooding Henry VIII. Peter Morgan's screenplay, based on a florid novel by Philippa Gregory, portrays the Tudor court as an ermine-lined hotbed of flirting. The king and his courtiers spend so much time bed-hopping it's a wonder they have time to run the country. Johansson's wet Mary, pimped out to Henry by her horribly ambitious father, is bamboozled by the political aspects of their relationship. She really loves him, unlike her manipulative sis, portrayed by Portman as the ultimate codpiece-tease. Director Justin Chadwick shoots in a ravishing style, lingering delightfully on food and flesh alike, while the soundtrack lays on the heavy portentous chords to remind us that – hey – someone's going to get their head chopped off eventually. It might sound tacky, but in truth The Other Boleyn Girl is shamelessly good fun, a chocolate truffle of a movie. – Paul Arendt, BBC Film
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Directed by: 
Justin Chadwick
Running Time: 
Natalie Portman, Scarlett Johansson, Eric Bana, Kristen Scott Thomas
Screenplay by: 
Peter Morgan, based on the novel by Philippa Gregory

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