Action opens in November of 1793, with Danton returning to Paris from his country retreat upon learning that the Committee for Public Safety, under Robespierre's incitement, has begun a ... See full summary »

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(scenario), (based on the play by: "L'Affaire Danton/Sprawa Dantona") | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Wojciech Pszoniak ...
Anne Alvaro ...
Éléonore Duplay
Roland Blanche ...
Lacroix
...
Camille Desmoulins (as Patrice Chereau)
Emmanuelle Debever ...
Krzysztof Globisz ...
Amar
...
Herman
Gérard Hardy ...
Tadeusz Huk ...
Stéphane Jobert ...
Panis
Marian Kociniak ...
Lindet
...
Barère de Vieuzac
...
Alain Macé ...
Héron (as Alain Mace)
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Storyline

Action opens in November of 1793, with Danton returning to Paris from his country retreat upon learning that the Committee for Public Safety, under Robespierre's incitement, has begun a series of massive executions, The Terror. Confident in the peoples' support, Danton clashes with his former ally, but calculating Robespierre soon rounds up Danton and his followers, tries them before a revolutionary tribunal and dipatches them to the guillotine. Written by Polish Cinema Database <http://info.fuw.edu.pl/Filmy/>

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PG | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

12 January 1983 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Дантон  »

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1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The part of famous painter Jacques-Louis David is played by a real painter, Franciszek Starowieyski. See more »

Goofs

Many significant figures and events were presented inaccurately or not at all. Danton was presented as a drunk. Louis de Saint-Just, known at the time as the "Angel of Death" and the public face of the Reign or Terror, acted like a modern-day hippie. Much of the military history, such as the Civil War in the Vendée, was completely excluded, removing the Terror from its historical context. See more »

Quotes

Robespierre: For the country's good we must be ruthless. We can't afford to be just. We'd have to rule by terror. You know what that is? Terror is nothing but despair.
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Connections

Featured in The Son of the Shark (1993) See more »

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User Reviews

a superb movie in the great tradition of a sweeping, dramatic historical epic.
5 January 2004 | by (Manila, Philippines) – See all my reviews

Dalton- by Andrzej Wajda 1982

Wajda's `Dalton' is a superb movie in the great tradition and grand manner of a sweeping, dramatic historical epic.

Danton, played with the perfect amount of bravura and zeal by Gerard Dieperdeu, is a one of the great pillars of the French revolution- he is fervently idolized, and as the leader of a huge publication, his power among the masses is immense and strong.

He and his small band of intellectual fellow propagandists start criticizing the government- a fledgling one headed by Robiespierre (of the Revolutionary Committee) The latter cries foul, and is unwilling to slacken his desperate leash on the country through terror and force. The people are starving and scared, and faced with those who "have nothing to lose but their chains" (to quote appropriately from Marx), the Committee gets downright nasty.

The film is a monumental narrative of the clash between these two mighty and principled men, culminating in the beheading of one of them. (of course you already know who the unlucky guy is if you know your world history). Underneath all the braggadocio and hedonism, Danton's indomitable will becomes awesome and meaningful. A less artistic director could have turned him into a caricature.

Like Dostoevky, the director confronts the viewer with the tragic grandeur of humanity- but in this case, the tragedy of the "historical process" and necessity for revolution.

Do we really attain true freedom, democracy and "liberty, fraternity, equality" when the people are starving and the leaders are using scare tactics? When do you justify a revolution and when do you call it mindless? Do revolutions and does great historical epochs happen by necessity or by the whims, caprices and action of A Few Good Men like Danton and Robiespierre, Bonaparte, etc. These are among the questions this urgently controlled movie bombarded me after firmly engaging my emotions and intellect.

Indeed, the director pulls no punches but takes some well-aimed, unerring swipes at our old-fashioned ideas about politics. The story is set in the 1790s, but its message still boomerangs to this very day. Wajda presents us with a subject that could degenerate into propaganda but instead is shaped into great art- one that is done with great narrative force and in the heart's blood.


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