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Directed by Laurent Tirard
Produced in 2007
Main Language - French
A disarmingly shameless French hommage to Shakespeare in Love, Laurent Tirard's elegant and witty seventeenth-century comedy constructs a similar romantic contrivance around alleged events from the life of the playwright Molière (the pseudonym of Jean-Baptiste Poquelin), taking advantage of a period in 1644 that has never been reliably documented. In this heavily fictionalised version, the debt-ridden young actor-writer (a dashing Romain Duris) is hired by the wealthy Monsieur Jourdain (Fabrice Luchini) to coach the latter in the art of performance in order to win the heart of a widowed countess. His pupil's painfully obvious lack of talent makes this a thankless task, rendered somewhat more diverting by the alluring presence of Madame Jourdain (Laura Morante). The resulting farcical liaisons lead to Molière's realisation that his initial pretensions towards tragedy are massively outweighed by a supremely natural gift for comedy. Unsurprisingly, the film has countless allusions to his still unwritten plays, though they function more as bonbons for the well-read than vital keys to comprehension: those after a straightforwardly rollicking costume romance will be amply satisfied.
Michael Brooke on 8th October 2007
Author of 154 reviews
Romain Duris stars as down-and-out actor-cum-playwright Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, later to become known to the world as Moliere in this lavish period drama.
Publisher: 20th Century Fox
Length: 120 mins
Aspect ratio: 16:9 Anamorphic Wide Screen
Format: DVD Colour
Released: 12th November 2007
Cat No: P922501000
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