The Other Woman of the King | Scarlett Johansson and the true story behind the film

MILAN – He, she, the other. It seems a story has already been, but if he is the King of England, specifically Henry VIII, then you understand that here the love triangle is worth more than a sigh or a broken heart, because in the game there are a notorious divorce, the birth of the anglican Church and the History of a world power. All this and much more is told The other woman of the kingdirected by Justin Chadwick, starring Scarlett Johansson, Natalie Portman and Eric Bana.

The other woman of the king
Natalie Portman and Scarlett Johansson playing the sister, Anna, and Mary Boleyn

The fact that the screenplay is signed by Peter Morgan – the british playwright who, by their vocation puts in scene the English History from the time of The Queen until you get to The Crown – should be a guarantee of quality and, in some respects it is, only that the original subject is based on the homonymous novel by Philippa Gregory, academic and writer, who has decided to investigate the story of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn through a new point of view, that of the other girl Boleyn (The Other Boleyn Girl it is also the original title of the film, Nda) or Mary.

The painting the First interview between Henry the EIGHTH and Anne Boleyn by Daniel Maclise
The painting the First interview between Henry the EIGHTH and Anne Boleyn by Daniel Maclise

It is through his perception of reality that we are witnessing at the moment in which a family history, the complicated relationship between the sisters Boleyn, becomes the engine of the action that will have devastating consequences, so much so that it had infinite pages of History. But how much truth is there in the film compared to what has happened? Let’s say from the outset that the poetic license there, even if it were only to remove a little of the powder left by the time, that could compromise the appeal of this new version of All about eve set in the SIXTEENTH century.

The other woman of the king
Eric Bana is Henry VIII, torn between Anna and Mary and The other women of the king

The other woman of the king, in fact, develop some of the dynamics from the feuilleton to the detriment of the Story. In the film Scarlett Johansson is the romantic heroine, tormented by the family, sincerely in love with the King, and endowed with a true moral that it always stand a moment before the catastrophe. At the opposite extreme, we find her sister Anna, played by Natalie Portman, who stands out for dislike and delusions of leadership. A true manipulator that has nothing to envy to Lady Macbeth. To stand between the two, we find Henry VIII, romantic or relentless, depending on the woman with whom he relates. Poor Catherine of Aragon!

The other woman of the king
Scarlett Johansson is Mary, the romantic heroine of the historical drama The other woman of the king

But since the truth is rarely pure and never simple, it is important to remember that Mary was the older sister of Anna and she was the Boleyn, with the worst reputation at the court, having regard to its well-known relationship with the king of France, Francis I. in Addition, many historians agree on the exclusion of that there was the slightest rivalry between the sisters for the love of Henry. As well as according to some scholars, the family Boleyn would not have lobbied to push the girls to the arms of the King. It’s not a bad plot twist. No? Therefore, Reality 1 Fantasy – 0.

The other woman of the king
A scene of The other woman of the king

Then what is The other woman of the king? Not a historical documentary, but a powerful portrait of two stunning women to the antithesis. A story of a time that seems distant and yet so near, because it speaks to us of a time in which the body of the women had an immense value, even if distorted. It was a land of conquest, a tool of power, as well as a fundamental element of the political chessboard, to save the throne and the Story.

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