The Danish Girl tells a fictitious love story inspired by the lives of Danish artists Lili Elbe and Gerda Wegener. Lili and Gerda’s marriage and work evolve as they navigate Lili’s groundbreaking journey as a transgender pioneer.
As I think I’ve mentioned in a previous review, I usually have an issue with full frontal graphic nudity – that is, I don’t mind if there’s nudity shown but in The Danish Girl, the absolute last thing I wanted to see is Eddie Redmayne’s junk. It almost ruined the film for me and I could hardly take it seriously. I don’t have an issue with the subject of the film and I get that it was Redmayne’s character exploring the possible changes in his body in his transition from a man to a woman but was it absolutely necessary to be so graphic? Or was it just filmed in a way that was meant to make myself or even the audience uncomfortable? He seemed awkward and completely out of his depth as Eina Wegener//Lili Elber. However, it would be interesting to see how someone who feels and believes he looks like a woman but doesn’t exactly. This is what the proposes, however, as the believability of the success of the transformation is something that would be hard pushed.
With the buzz surrounding the film, I expected the film to be so much more intense and in depth with Redmayne’s performance that much more emotional, really wanting us to feel for Redmayne’s character. The paintings displayed and Alicia Vikander’s ever brilliant performance were the highlights of the film, her adjustment to her partner’s true identity the real story of the film. She gives life to a poorly written role. Even Matthias Schoenaerts, whose a brilliant actor in his own right, has a hard time working with the script and is left in a underdeveloped state.
The film was injected with a variety of clichés and the cinematography hardly seemed to capture the picturesque creation of a painting and transition. It could’ve been emotional and touching with the story’s of the internal conflicts of a man and the love of a woman to her husband. Unfortunately, the result of the film was quite cold despite the beautiful production and costume design.
It’s a poor effort considering Tom Hooper’s work on The King’s Speech, Eddie Redmayne withThe Theory of Everything, and Alicia Vikander in A Royal Affair.