EFFIE GRAY explores the scandalous true story of the troubled relationship between Victorian art critic John Ruskin and Effie Gray, his teenage bride. After marrying at 19, Effie quickly realises her marriage is a lie when Ruskin refuses to consummate it. Yearning for affection, she falls for the artist John Everett Millais. Desperate to be freed from John, Effie embarks on a life-changing journey to become one of the first women in history to seek a divorce from her husband, making her an everlasting figure in feminist history.
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Dakota Fanning, Greg Wise and Emma Thompson star in this drama directed by Richard Laxton. When the young 19-year-old Euphemia 'Effie' Gray (Fanning) married the renowned art critic and historian John Ruskin (Wise), ten years her senior, she imagined a life filled with fun, excitement and passion. After five years of unconsummated marriage however, Effie seeks an annulment on the advice of long-time friend and confidant Lady Eastlake (Thompson). Stating the reason for the request as being her husband's impotency, Effie is forced to undergo an invasive, both physically and emotionally, examination to prove her virginity and to disprove Ruskin's claim that her body is disfigured. As she develops feelings for Ruskin's protege John Everett Millais (Tom Sturridge), Effie tries her hardest to overcome her fears and past experiences to live a normal, happy life.