Sorry that we always compare 16ish Century flicks to The Tudors, but we juss love The Tudors so dang munch, and we juss can’t helps ourselves from comparing things that have no comparison to The Tudors. Anywho, Bertrand Tavernier‘s long take on Madame de La Fayette‘s short story, La Princesse de Montpensier, is like a French Tudors, but with little to no hotness, aka sex, since any ‘action’ happens off screen!!! At least they gave us the royal treat of watching some handmaidens bathe Mélanie Thierry‘s rack, as she prepares to have her hymen broken on her wedding nite! Got yer attention? It did ours, even though this flick sometimes borders on snoozyTuesdayland
Thierry is the Princess in question, and the dude she’s arranged married to (Grégoire Leprince-Ringuet) is not the dude she loves. That’s her hubby’s cousin(?), the roguish Duke de Guise (younger Hannibal Gaspard Ulliel). Throw in their outranking other cousin(?), the slimy Duke d’Anjou (mustache-tastic Raphaël Personnaz), who’s also chasing her tail, and BLAM!, we’ve got a love square sorta goings on!! Sounds hot, but it’s more chaste then you’d think it would be. CHASTE-TIZE THAT SHIZ!!!! But it’s the 5th wheel, the Prince’s pacifist mentor, the Count de Chabannes (Lambert Wilson, who deserves a better American resume than Catwoman and Sahara), truly driving this carriage from start to finish. He becomes the Princess’ mentor, friend, and in the end, only trusted confidant. He also seems to be the only person with any values or morales, and thus our most trusted protagonist (the film could of easily been named for him). Btw, the three suitors are all real historical peoples!
There’s other shaz going on, like a religious war with the Huguenots, and lots of horse riding, and even more horse riding + courtly stuff like playful swordplay and large banquets, AND MORE HORSE RIDING!! It all adds up to one endless runtime, which might feel a bit unnecessary, and yet there’s never a moment wasted… unless you believe there should be more panties a dropping than men talking about it. That’s why this aint no Tudors! Shame, cause her highness in high on hotness!!!
Chaos Thierry: who wouldn’t want to Franc her?
Verdictgo: a mild Jeepers Worth A Peepers
Princess is mostly a crowning achievement in NY this Friday, on demand on April 20th, and elsewhere elsewhen
and until next thyme the balcony is clothed…