The man that made A Royal Affair quite so memorable was an elderly gent, with an Einstein-esq mop of white hair sat in the row in front who took to randomly shouting things at the screen. At first it was a very vocal defence of the heroine who was being particularly badly treated by her husband the King of Denmark.
Then later he turned his outbursts to the UK government, presumably drawing some sort of parallel with what was happening between crown and government in 18th Century Denmark. At least we know he was certainly finding the film affecting.
And it is a good, solid film. Not an amazing film. Having checked on the fount of all knowledge that is Wiki it seems to be based on real events. The story is that an English princess is betrothed to the Danish King Christian VII. She sets out determined to be a good wife and he is an arse to her, well it's most likely some sort of undiagnosed paranoid psychological disorder but he is pretty horrible.
A new country doctor is employed as the King's physician and he seems to have a knack with the King. In the meantime the Queen has done her duty and produced an heir and closed the door on her husband. The physician is asked to look after the Queen and finding a kindred spirit an affair quickly starts.
The love triangle proves productive with the doctor and Queen persuading the King to be more authoritative in Parliament and push through reforms that benefit the ordinary people. But it soon all starts to unravel as the King's council and his dominant step mother smell a rat.
Great to see Mads Mikkelsen in a non-baddie role - he plays the doctor - and I liked the juxtaposition of love story, politics and history. Came away having been engaged, entertained and educated a little on a part and period of European history that was alien to me. However, the frosty winter setting for most of it must have seeped into the characters because I never warmed to them quite as much as I should have. As a consequence it felt like it stopped just short of feeling like a tragedy.