I’m sure by now you’ve seen your share of films based on true stories but have you ever wondered if Hollywood is giving you the whole story? There’s a good chance they’re not. They call it “taking liberties.” I call them Dirty Rotten Liars!
I’ve looked into 3 of my favorite films and found what I thought to be key components of the story.
I can understand why the film makers decided to leave this information out but their secrets are not safe with me. I write a blog, no one is safe! Dun Dun Duuuuun.
The Other Boleyn Girl
This movie centers around Mary Boleyn, sister of the infamous Anne Boleyn. It begins just after her wedding to William Carey. Cue King Henry VIII. He and his wife have been unable to produce a male heir so he goes searching for a mistress who is up for the job. Don’t hate the playa, hate the game.
Are you singing “I’m Henry the 8th I am. Henry the 8th I am I am? You are now!
King Henry first sets his sights on Anne but she’s a bit too independent for his liking so he turns to Mary. Sweet, simple, little Mary who has no desire for nobility and wealth. She just wants have a nice peaceful life in the country with her new husband. Since suffrage didn’t happen for another 400 years Mary had no choice but to go with the King.
Throughout this film Mary is portrayed as little miss innocent when in reality she was a bit of a hussy. Mary lived in France as a courtier throughout her teenage years where was reported to have had several affairs with members of the French court and possibly with King Francis himself. That tramp!
This movie is epic and the real story is just as amazing. While reading up on this I learned that the 300 Spartans marching into battle against the Persians was actually more like 5,000. Still they were up against an army of about 200,000 so the odds weren’t exactly in their favor.
They don’t tell you this in the movie but the Spartans were not the honorable society the film makers would have you believe. As I mentioned, there was about 4700 (give or take) slaves that were forced to go to war against their will. Sparta, not unlike Persia got these slaves by conquering neighboring areas to build up their empire.
Then there is the scene in the beginning where Leonidas is thrown out into the wilderness to kill a wolf as a sort of right of passage. The real way for a Spartan to prove his manliness was not to kill wolf but to murder a slave. He had to find some clever way of doing it too because if he was caught he would be severely punished. The Spartans were twisted.
The King’s Speech
This movie center’s around Prince George VI aka Bertie… because Bertie is short for George. Bertie has a st st stutter and for someone who’s job it is to give speeches you can imagine how inconvenient that can be. He hires the aid of speech therapist Lionel Logue and they quickly become best friend’s forever… The end.
I lied. While the relationship between Bertie and Lionel was the primary focus of the film the truth is a bit more interesting. The film shows Bertie’s older brother David about to ascend to the throne but he’s just dripping with scandal.
First, he is in love and plans to marry an American divorcee named Wallis. Who name’s their little girl Wallis? I mean, seriously! Second, and this is conveniently left out of the film, David was a big fan of Hitler. Yep, you heard me. All of Europe is on the brink of war and the super power at the time that was England was about to have a King who had a dude-crush on the devil.
Luckily David did abdicate the throne and married Wallis. The British Parliament then persuaded him to move to the Bahamas so that they would not have to worry about him making deals with the Nazi’s. One of the last shots you see in the film is David and Wallis watching Bertie’s big speech with a beach in the background.
What other films have you seen that didn’t tell the whole story?