1661: Cardinal Mazarin dies. In the power vacuum, the young Louis asserts his intention to govern as well as rule. Mazarin's fiscal advisor, Colbert, warns against Fouquet, the Surintendant...
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1661: Cardinal Mazarin dies. In the power vacuum, the young Louis asserts his intention to govern as well as rule. Mazarin's fiscal advisor, Colbert, warns against Fouquet, the Surintendant who's been systematically looting the treasury and wants to be prime minister. Fouquet believes Louis will soon tire of exercizing power; he overplays his hand, offering a bribe to Louis's mistress to be his ally. She reports this to the king who arrests Fouquet. Louis and Colbert design a brilliant strategy to keep merchants making money, nobles in debt, the urban poor working and fed, and peasants untaxed. Years later, in a coda, we see Louis exercising the power of the sun.Written by
Rossellini give us a magnificent lesson of history, and how his movie's title is well choose! Remarkable is the style, and the psychology of the young Louis, as a man full of his own genius, is excellent; we understand him, we understand each action which will conduct him to the summit of the real absolutism. Never before, a french director didn't explored the french meaning of the highness and nobility, the french mentality of this ancient time where the peoples of France sincerely believed that the king was divine. There were an Italian, an Italian who was flirting a while with the communism who enjoyed us with this splendid last sequence, and this last true picture of a true king highly thinking of his charge and his destiny. Maybe the Frenchmen are too busy with the ruins of their glorious past to effectively and really understand this past.
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