The Other Boleyn Girl – reviewed like a whore

Bowling Girl

First off, if you’re intending to watch this movie in the hopes of seeing the breasts of Scarlett Johansson and Natalie Portman bursting provocatively from their bodices, you’re wasting your time. If you’re planning on watching The Other Boleyn Girl for a sexy and entertaining blend of historical fact and Hollywood drama, don’t bother. The movie is as historically accurate as The Flintstones and as much fun to watch as an actual stone. If you wanted to go see it because you liked the book – again, think again. I read the beginning of my girlfriend’s copy while sat on the toilet and the cinematic translation shares none of the flare, intrigue or punch I barely found in the novel.

In fact, the only decent reason I can think of to watch this is the promise of getting laid by the girl you’re taking. Of course, that doesn’t help if you are in possession of a womb – in which case, I would advise you don’t go to watch this with your boyfriend in case the grotesque loser you’re currently fucking out of pity expects anything as a result. Go watch it with your other vagina buddies instead – and then be severely disappointed by the incredibly dull movie.

There seems to be a trend amongst a certain kind of film-maker that, when making a historical drama, there is no need to make it believable or interesting. And that was the main problem I had with The Other Boleyn Girl, I was just wasn’t buying it.

One such example; How much do they need to labour the fucking point about every fucking person being forced to do stuff they don’t want to fucking do? Bizarrely, they thrusted this unfairness in our faces at every opportunity (thereby convincing me this was the norm of the era) but all the characters continued to act shocked whenever such a thing happened – surely they’d have gotten used to that shit?

The movie was basically a re-telling of the relationship between Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII. Anyone who knows anything about English history will be well aware on Anne Boleyn, Henry’s second wife, and their marriage which tore England away from the Catholic Church and almost ripped the country apart. Seriously, read a history book – It’s pretty interesting stuff which was completely lost by the movie’s infactuation with misplaced sentimentality, by-the-book romance, and heavy-handed moralising. It was probably an intentional decision to show the destabilisation of the country as a backdrop to the events in the King’s Court, but it didn’t work. Voices calling Anne a witch from the outside of the castle was not quite sufficient to demonstrate the effect of the relationship between the two main characters, and so the story came across as just another complicated love story – rather than the world-shaping passionate affair it should have been.

Well, that paragraph was unintentionally heavy and not very funny. Allow me to get back on track:

Half-way through the movie I suddenly noticed that the girls were acting bloody well. It was like sitting on a bus and staring at the tasty cleavage of the slutty girl opposite you for a good fifteen minutes before realising she’s pointing a gun at your face and clutching a bomb. You start to wonder if you should give a shit about her and offer her some respect, but then the bus hits a speed bump, you catch them jiggle out of the corner of your eye and realise it’s just easier to sit back and stare. Anyway, I may finally have forgiven Natalie Portman for her role in the new Star Wars trilogy.

Eric Bana as Henry VIII was as broody as an Emo kid whose mum had just bought Shockwaves styling gel instead of styling wax. This made the King come across as so two-dimensional his motivation appeared to consist entirely of eat, fuck and rage – so it was a bit like watching a shark but not nearly as cool.

Ultimately, The Other Boleyn Girl was a flawed concept that was directed ineptly. This is what happens when you take history and replace all the good bits with a lame, distracting love story. And that’s why they killed off Mel Gibson’s wife early on in Braveheart – so he could concentrate on killing people and screaming.

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