Release Date: June 10
Director: Justin Chadwick
Writer: Peter Morgan (adapted from the novel by Philippa Gregory)
Cinematographer: Kieran McGuigan
Starring: Scarlett Johansson, Natalie Portman, Eric Bana
Studio/Run Time: Sony Pictures/Columbia, 114 mins.
Women overrule the ruler in pretty, vacant period piece
If beauty is truth, The Other Boleyn Girl is a paragon of honesty. On the flip side of Keats’ epigram, however, the film's historical liberties counteract the radiance of both its young starlets and the verdant English countryside the movie depicts. Based on the bestselling novel by Philippa Gregory, The Other Boleyn Girl is a sumptuous moving tapestry (shot in HD) about the most famous of Henry VIII’s wives—the ruthlessly ambitious Anne Boleyn (Portman)—and her innocent sister Mary (Johansson). The lesser-known Mary serves as the King’s mistress and bears him a bastard son before the conniving Anne elbows her way into the King’s arms and onto the throne. Director Justin Chadwick imbues his first feature with gorgeous wide angles of horses galloping through the surf and gauzy close-ups of the Boleyn sisters. But after a languid beginning, the film suffers the predictable casualty of adapting information-dense source material, and hurtles along to its conclusion at a dizzying pace.