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The night of August 24, 1572, is known as the Massacre of St. Bartholomew. In France a religious war is raging. In order to impose peace a forced wedding is arranged between Margot de Valois, sister of the immature Catholic King Charles IX, and the Hugenot King Henri of Navarre. Catherine of Medici maintains her behind-the-scenes power by ordering assaults, poisonings, and instigations to incest. Written by
Oliver 'Asana' Duex <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre---not exactly a subject the average person knows much about these days. But, a VERY important part of French and European history nonetheless. The history teacher in me will now BRIEFLY take over: Like England, there was a lot of tension between the Protestants (Hugenots) and Catholics during the 16th century. However, unlike Henry VIII's ultimate decision to break from the Catholic Church, the French pretty much wiped out the Hugenots--those who were not killed fled abroad. Up until St. Bart's Day, there had been tension but eventually the king granted religious freedom to all. This was not to last, as a conspiracy was hatched and on St. Bart's Day, thousands of Hugenots were murdered. To commemorate this event, the Pope issued a special medallion and ordered a celebration. Not exactly one of the finer moments in human history.
The movie concerns the machinations leading up to the event as well as portraying the massacre and the after effects. I'm not going to say more, as I don't want to spoil it for the viewer. However, I will say that the writing, acting and pacing of this film were excellent and kept my attention throughout. This fictionalized account of this true-life tragedy is compelling.
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