1661: Cardinal Mazarin dies. In the power vacuum, the young Louis asserts his intention to govern as well as rule. Mazarin's fiscal advisor, Colbert, warns against Fouquet, the Surintendant... See full summary »
This biography tells the life story of Augustine, the Bishop of Hippo, a North African region during the last years of the Roman Empire. The film details Augustine's struggle to maintain ... See full summary »
A woman recently released from prison and a strange young female street urchin keep running into each other on the streets of Paris and finally become companions in a very strange and very ... See full summary »
The film dramatizes about a dozen vignettes from the life of St. Francis and his early followers - starting with their return in the rain to Rivotorlo from Rome when the Pope blessed their ... See full summary »
This is not really a drama; instead it's social,economic and political history told through sophisticated conversations between the protagonists and the odd set piece confrontation. Interactions are illustrative rather than performed. The positives are the real life settings using period buildings and cityscapes, the fascinating costumes and furnishings and the generally well done portrayal of interactions at the highest level. The subjects range widely: commerce, banking, arts, architecture, politics, diplomacy, government, though they are not covered in detail, with Rosselini skimming the surface in an appealing though superficial way. One might say one gets a feel for the themes of the period and it will be enjoyed more by those who don't know much about the period already.
So it doesn't have much on personal or family relationships, convincing conflict or intrigue, a sense of how the elite actually lived or much at all about the poorer section of the population. Think of it as a traditional history textbook with very rich illustrations.
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