The Lady and the Duke

Rated 3.0 “Mr. and Mrs. Let-them-eat-cake are goners!” It’s the 1790s in Paris and revolutionaries have imprisoned the king and queen. Aristocrats are the targets of slandermongers and mobs entertain themselves by parading through the streets with decapitated royalist heads on poles. Against this backdrop of upheaval and violence, director Eric Rohmer turns to conversation (the characters here talk and talk and talk) to capture a time and place in which intimate friends find themselves on opposite sides of political and moral fault lines. At the center of this reality-based drama are the discussions between an intelligent, articulate Scottish noblewoman (Lucy Russell) stuck in The City of Lights and her former lover, the Prince of Orleans (Jean-Claude Dreyfus), whose opinions on sociopolitical issues are punctuated by their different personalities. The painted, digitally enhanced backgrounds give the film a seductive, dreamy tone.