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The Taking of Power by Louis XIV

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The Taking of Power by Louis XIV

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
Unrated
runtime:
94 minutes
performer:
Jean-Marie Patte, Raymond Jourdan, Katharina Renn
director:
Roberto Rossellini
distributor:
PBS Home Video
author:
Philippe Erlanger, Jean Gruault

We gave it a B+

The historical epic, often an excuse for over-the-top everything, gets a makeover in The Taking of Power by Louis XIV, a brainy, pared-down made-for-TV snapshot of Louis XIV’s evolution from detached king to empowered monarch. (This film was one of many neorealist director Rossellini made for television, a medium he embraced for its ? educational possibilities.) By Hollywood standards, the drama may be a bit flat, but the director’s fascination with 17th-century court ritual, ?captured with detailed old-master beauty, is mesmerizing. EXTRAS The standout in this ? Criterion Collection disc is author Tag Gallagher’s film essay exploring Rossellini’s canny craft. B+