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At this time of year, it feels good to unplug the computer, stash your electronic devices away and crack open something heavy and dense. While this could be a mega-size box of chocolate (or bottle of bourbon), it’s just possible our senses crave something more demanding, more literary and Old World.

Yes, it’s time to leave your comfortably heated room and wander the dark, freezing, cobblestone streets of centuries ago. Throw yourself into deep and daunting relationships with characters who wear corsets and carry swords. Here are two films that show you how.

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