Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
Watch On
  1. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    Dec 6, 2012
    88
    Writers Rasmus Heisterberg and Nicolaj Arcel are known in America for the original version of "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo." This film is the exact opposite: stately instead of propulsive, emotionally warm instead of chilly, lit by candles and sun instead of flashlights and neon.
  2. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Nov 7, 2012
    88
    A big budget historical drama that carries Denmark's hopes into the Oscar season. It provides still more exposure for the rising Danish star Mads Mikkelsen, the latest male sex symbol of the art house crowd.
  3. Reviewed by: Ella Taylor
    Nov 8, 2012
    85
    While it's lavish and lush in all the expected costume-drama ways, A Royal Affair never bogs down in period detail. What drives the film, along with great acting, is the appetite of director Nikolaj Arcel and his boisterous co-writer Rasmus Heisterberg ("I want a fun queen!" wails Christian) for the queasy workings of political gamesmanship both above and below board.
  4. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Nov 15, 2012
    88
    Historical drama of the highest order - teeming with big ideas, and anchored by the nicely nuanced performances of Vikander and Mikkelsen.
  5. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Jan 17, 2013
    88
    Although the brazen lovers, bellicose ministers and backstabbing handmaidens are familiar elements, the film is so handsomely mounted that we happily endure the ride until the turning of the screws in the tragic last act.
  6. Reviewed by: Sam Adams
    Nov 7, 2012
    83
    Newcomer Følsgaard is the wild card, but he manages to make the king both villain and victim, sometimes a vindictive schemer, at others far-eyed and helpless, a puppet for the forces behind him.
  7. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Nov 29, 2012
    88
    Takes a fascinating chapter in Danish history, little-known to general audiences, and presents it engagingly.
  8. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Nov 8, 2012
    90
    With its sumptuous settings, urgent romance and intellectual substance, A Royal Affair is a mind-opener crossed with a bodice-ripper.
User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 44 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 10
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 10
  3. Negative: 1 out of 10
  1. Nov 13, 2012
    9
    Near perfection. A historical romance/drama (maybe even a twisted coming of age tale) that never seems laughable or dull. Each of the mainNear perfection. A historical romance/drama (maybe even a twisted coming of age tale) that never seems laughable or dull. Each of the main characters are complex and given their fair portrayals. Every motivation seems remarkably human and understandable, even if cringe-worthy. It did feel a little long, but that was its only flaw. Beautifully shot, acted, edited, scored, everything. Full Review »
  2. Feb 21, 2015
    1
    oh look at that ..a perfect 10 looking out at all the poor.....reminds me of television as a whole....we strive to be attractive and fitoh look at that ..a perfect 10 looking out at all the poor.....reminds me of television as a whole....we strive to be attractive and fit although you can't just make yourself attractive so its pretty messed up..oh look at that...a girl with multiple choices for a mate....how fun Full Review »
  3. Lyn
    Mar 25, 2014
    8
    Can't get enough of Mads Mikkelsen, who was so riveting in Oscar-nominated "The Hunt" (2013) and so riveting here as well. This was a nicelyCan't get enough of Mads Mikkelsen, who was so riveting in Oscar-nominated "The Hunt" (2013) and so riveting here as well. This was a nicely told period piece that may bring a couple of others to mind at times -- "Marie Antoinette" in the young queen's situation; "Amadeus" with the somewhat crazy young king and the palace treachery. Danish history probably isn't high on everyone's list, but this was an interesting film. Full Review »