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The Lady and the Duke (2001)

L'Anglaise et le duc (original title)
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During the French Revolution, a Scottish aristocrat and her former lover, the Duke of Orleans, find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict.

Director:

Éric Rohmer

Writers:

Grace Elliott (memoir "Ma vie sous la révolution"), Éric Rohmer (adaptation)
3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jean-Claude Dreyfus ... Le duc d'Orléans
Lucy Russell ... Grace Elliott
Alain Libolt Alain Libolt ... Duc de Biron
Charlotte Véry ... Pulcherie the Cook
Rosette ... Fanchette
Léonard Cobiant Léonard Cobiant ... Champcenetz
François Marthouret François Marthouret ... Dumouriez
Caroline Morin Caroline Morin ... Nanon
Héléna Dubiel Héléna Dubiel ... Madame Meyler
Laurent Le Doyen Laurent Le Doyen ... Section Miromesnil: Officer
Georges Benoît Georges Benoît ... Section Miromesnil: President
Serge Wolfsperger Serge Wolfsperger ... Section Miromesnil: Aide
Daniel Tarrare Daniel Tarrare ... Justin the Doorman
Marie Rivière ... Madame Laurent
Michel Demierre Michel Demierre ... Chabot
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Storyline

An episodic look at Grace Elliott (1760-1823) and Philippe, the Duke of Orleans, during the French Revolution. In 1790, they are friends, no longer lovers. He suggests she leave France, she warns him to quit the Revolution. In 1792, she must escape Paris on foot. Less than a month later, she returns on an errand of mercy and shows great courage saving the governor of Tuileries. The Duke in turn steps in to protect Grace. In early 1793, she demands a promise from the Duke that he vote to spare Louis's life; he does not, and Grace is furious. In April, he warns her of a search; she is arrested and brought before the committee. Orleans, too, is suspect. The guillotine awaits. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violent images | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France | Germany

Language:

French

Release Date:

7 September 2001 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Lady and the Duke See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

FRF 39,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$25,804, 12 May 2002, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$329,845, 6 October 2002
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Chosen by "Les Cahiers du cinéma" (France) as one of the 10 best pictures of 2001 (#02) See more »

Connections

References The Far Country (1954) See more »

Soundtracks

Marche lugubre
Music by François-Joseph Gossec
Performed by La Grande Écurie et la Chambre du Roy (as l'Orchestre de la Grande Ecurie & la Chambre du Roy)
Conducted by Jean-Claude Malgoire
Produced by Igor Kirkwood
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Well worth seeing--and very different from the usual film from this famous director.
4 September 2012 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

This film from Eric Rohmer is very, very unusual. While it's not unusual to use matte paintings to create effects (such as to paint in buildings in the background to cover up modern skyscrapers for period films), here Rohmer uses another technique--one I have never seen before in a full-length film. The movie makes no attempt to blend in what is real and what isn't. Instead, in many scenes, you have folks walking within giant paintings which appear to have been painted during the 18th century--when the film was to have occurred. It is VERY striking and very unusual--and you can't help but notice it.

The story is an essentially true story about a woman named Grace Elliott--a very, very interesting lady. She was the mistress of the future King George IV of Britain and after giving birth to an illegitimate child, she left to live in France. There she became the mistress of the King of France's cousin, the Duke of Orleans. However, the timing for all this was very poor. That's because a few years later, the French Revolution arrived--and her now ex-lover, the Duke, begs her to leave the country. She insists she's safe and time passes. And, as time passes, the country becomes more paranoid and more self-destructive--killing off aristocrats and foreigners in the wake of a now insane revolution.

At this point in time, the Duke and Elliott have changed. Now, the liberal-minded Duke has embraced the Revolution and is an official in its new government. She, on the other hand, is a die-hard royalist who really should keep her opinions to herself. Yet, despite their different paths, they remained friends--though there was a lot of tension between them, as the Duke eventually consented to the execution of the King--something Elliott had a hard time forgiving. What's next for this unusual lady? See for yourself in this excellent film.

The film was based in part on the autobiography of Elliott--which was published after her death. Earlier I said the story is ESSENTIALLY true because I did some reading and found that she had a tendency to sometimes 'embellish' the facts, though what's in the film is what occurred. Overall, a fascinating look into the insanity of the French Revolution and at a particularly unusual woman. Well worth seeing.


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