Once upon a time there was a palace where the kings of France used to live:the Louvre.Across the river,there was also a sinister tower ,the tower of Nesle.What happened (or not) in this place is the stuff legend are made of.And those events were most likely legends (see my comment on Abel Gance 's 1956 version for that matter),nothing that Dumas wrote really happened but who cares ? The unexpected twists are so far-fetched that you will not see this movie to complete your knowledge of French history.
Abel Gance 's screenplay was not an improvement but his use of color at a time most of FRench films were black and white was dazzling.Gaston Roudès -whose name is virtually unknown even by those interested in the FRench thirties cinema- made the best of his budget which was certainly lower.The settings are made with care and the cinematography made a good use of black and white to depict the dark corridors,the streets of the sleepy Paris town where the town crier shouts " all is quiet! sleep in peace ,Parisians ! everything's all right" when the worst things happen (there're similar scenes in John Ford's "Mary of Scotland" (1936) Banned in Finland in 1939 ,probably because of the orgy ,which of course would not shock a twelve-year old today.This is the most famous scene of a forgotten movie,which was outstripped by its remake by Gance -a remake few people know as well-
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