A Royal Affair (15)


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The Independent Culture

The feeble generic title aside, this is an absorbing account of a famous period in Danish history.

Mads Mikkelsen plays a German doctor and free-thinker, Struensee, whose friendship with the king, Christian VII, and secret affair with his English-born queen (Alicia Vikander) enabled a brief summer of enlightenment to shine on benighted Denmark.

Even Voltaire expressed his admiration of the country's pioneering liberalism. Nikolaj Arcel pays close attention to detail and setting, and draws a superb performance from Mikkel Boe Følsgaard as the half-childish, half-deranged king.