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The Advocate (1993)
"The Hour of the Pig" (original title)

 -  Crime | Drama | History  -  24 August 1994 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 1,438 users  
Reviews: 23 user | 7 critic

In medieval France, young lawyer Richard Courtois leaves Paris for the simpler life in the country. However, he is soon drawn into amorous and political intrigues. At the same time, he is ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Courtois
Amina Annabi ...
Seigneur Jehan d'Auferre
Magistrate Boniface
Jeannine Martin
Filette d'Auferre
Bailiff Labatier
Elizabeth Spriggs ...
Madame Langlois
Raoul Delfosse ...
Blind George
Gerard d'Auferre
Jean-Pierre Stewart ...


In medieval France, young lawyer Richard Courtois leaves Paris for the simpler life in the country. However, he is soon drawn into amorous and political intrigues. At the same time, he is pushed to defend a pig, owned by the mysterious gypsy Samira. The pig has been arrested for the murder of a young boy. Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


When murder is the motive, seduction is the last defense.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for elements of strong sexuality | See all certifications »





Release Date:

24 August 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Advocate  »

Box Office


$667,078 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Appearing on the American talk show "The Talk" in 2012, Harvey Weinstein(an executive producer on the film), recalled 'The Hour of the Pig' as being the worst film he had worked on - a complete disaster and urged the audience not to see it. See more »


In the epilogue crawl, the character name Mathieu is spelled once correctly, and in a subsequent paragraph as Mathiew. See more »


[Richard is nude and embarrassed]
Maria: Don't worry, I have brothers.
See more »


Quant Voi en la Fin D'este
Written by Perrin D'Agincourt
Performed by the St. George's Canzona
Counter-tenor, Derek Harrison
Arranged by John Sothcott
Courtesy of CRD Records
See more »

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User Reviews

What do the simple folk do?
13 April 2014 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

A tale set in medieval France, The Advocate is the story of a lawyer who tired of the decadence of Paris longs for a simpler life Colin Firth heads for a most rural area where he figures the peasant folk to be a kindler, gentler lot than what he left in the Isle De France.

What he finds is a brutal and ignorant lot of people ruled by a cynical local lord played by Nicol Williamson who manipulates the populace for his own benefit. Williamson is not someone from an old and titled family, he's a harbinger of what was to come, a businessman who for services rendered got a title. Now that he's rich and with a title, he and his family can live a hedonistic lifestyle and they indulge themselves to the fullest. Williamson's son Justin Chadwick has all the vices and invents a few of his own.

Among the beliefs these folks have is that animals have souls, souls because of their simplicity can be readily possessed by Satan and his minions. They face trial for offenses as one poor goat does at the beginning with a man who sodomized him. Only a testament to the goat's good moral character saves him from Judge Michael Gough hanging him with the man who did him wrong.

As a defense advocate Firth gets one case to defend a pig owned by a family of gypsies. I will not go further except to say that Firth is quite disillusioned by everyone in what he thought was some rural idyll.

The film has a lot of nudity in it. Quite frankly it needed it to perk up the interest. The Advocate for the most part is one crashingly dull film and I think the players knew it. Even Donald Pleasence who usually can spark a film doesn't deliver at all. No doubt Pleasence was kept in strict directorial check, a pity.

Medieval France is recreated quite well, too bad the story just wasn't more interesting.

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