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In July 1789, the French Revolution is rumbling. Far from the turmoil, at the Château de Versailles, King Louis XVI, Queen Marie-Antoinette and their courtiers keep on living their usual carefree lives. But when the news of the storming of the Bastille reaches them, panic sets in and most of the aristocrats and their servants desert the sinking ship, leaving the Royal Family practically alone. Which is not the case of Sidonie Laborde, the Queen's reader, a young woman, entirely devoted to her mistress; she will not give her up under any circumstances. What Sidonie does not know yet is that these are the last three days she will spend in the company of her beloved Queen... Written by
Farewell, My Queen is a French film that covers three days in the life of servant Sidonie. She is Marie Antoinette's reader. The three days cover the early days of the French Revolution as seen through her eyes. Be advised, this is not a film about Marie Antoinette. If you are entertained by the series Downton Abbey or Upstairs Downstairs and enjoying stealing a glimpse behind the inner workings of court life this film will not disappoint.
There is no exposition at the beginning of this film. The dialog is French with English subtitles. The original audience would be expected to be familiar with the basic history and players of the French Revolution. If you are not familiar, it's a good idea to review this time period before seeing the film.
A sense of mystery is evoked by a combination of narrative reveals and soundtrack. It's a handsome film that duly contrasts the masters and servants via costumes, sets and cinematography. The performances are particularly effective as Diane Kruger and Lea Seydoux are well cast and empathetic in their roles.
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