Digital Spy

Search Digital Spy
1

Movies Review

Cannes 2010: 'La Princesse De Montpensier'

By
La Princesse De Montpensier
Remember that girl/boy at school who everyone fancied? You couldn't even put your finger on exactly why, but they just had a certain something that caused havoc all around them as people competed for their affections. In this movie set in 1500s France, that person is Marie de Mezieres (Melanie Thierry), the titular princess. Over the course of the film, childhood sweetheart Henri de Guise (Gaspard Ulliel), the Duke of Anjou (Raphael Personnaz) and the movie's moral centre, the Count of Chabannes (Lambert Wilson), vie for her love. There's also the small matter of her husband Philippe (Gregoire Leprince-Ringuet), who she is forced to marry against her will.

The film takes place against the backdrop of an on-off war between Catholics and Huguenots, with truces signed and disregarded seemingly from scene to scene. The men go to and come home from battle, all the while Philippe struggles in vain to win the love of his wife and is driven to madness by the response she inspires in others, especially his childhood friend Henri. La Princesse De Montpensier is a swords 'n' corsets flick (though mainly swords) that does exactly what you'd expect from a moody period drama.

There are no great surprises over the course of the film, as the sheer torment of forbidden or unattainable love is laid bare in the surroundings of endless conflict. The difficulty of ascertaining the passing of time is a flaw, but some fine performances make this one to watch for everyone - except those allergic to lace and the clang of sword-on-sword action. Thierry's princess is a little frustrating, certainly, but she's probably supposed to be - and the swashbuckling Guise, kindly Count, raging Philippe and swaggering Duke make the two-hours-plus runtime fly by.



Leave your comments on this entry below!

You May Like

Comments

Loading...