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Best Movie About The French Revolution

This movie was a long miniseries type of TV event that was televised in both France and the US in 1989 for the Bicentennial of the French Revolution (200 year anniversary - 1789 to 1989). In Paris, it was unsuccessful because despite the attempts to bring tourists for the Bicentennial or to have specialized events including this film, most people weren't interested in the French Revolution anniversary for some reason. This movie is wonderful, with great acting, direction, cinematography and writing. It's accurate to the real events of the Revolution, by far the most accurate depiction of the Revolution ever put on film. Nevertheless, because it has no principal point of view, multiple characters and perspectives, it's been critiqued as being incoherent. I don't mind this because it wants to be neutral and not taking either sides of the pro-Revolution party or those in favor of the King and Queen. The costumes are historically accurate to the period and they actually filmed in Paris and Versailles. The chateau of Versailles is beautifully shown including the Queen's farm L'hameau de la Reine. This was a gorgeous epic movie and it's a great way to learn about the French Revolution for students.

Unfortunately because it was not a popular film and it was only a TV movie, it's not commercially available on DVD. There might be some older VHS copies from 1990 (VHS tapes of movies would be on the market the year after a movie's release. There might also be websites where you can download the entire film. The last portions of the film are available for free on Youtube.

Jane Seymour as Marie Antoinette is nothing special but she's quite good in the role. There is great acting by the French actor in the role of Louis the 16th, who provides the role with humanity and with a sympathetic slant. Sam Neil and Peter Ustinov are also in this film and do a great job. The movie was shown in in both English and French language.


wigs and costumes were also much better than in most well known films about the late 1700s (like "Amadeus", for example).