Monday, February 19, 2007

Battle of the Brave (2004)

I had never even heard of Battle of the Brave, filmed in Quebec, with major actors such as Gerard Depardieu in cameo roles. My husband found it in the discount bin at the video store. It received really bad reviews; I would never have watched it if I had read them first. A torrid romance set in French Canada in the mid-18th century; we actually found it rather entertaining, although we would not recommend it for children. Madame Pompadour was one of the characters and I have rarely seen her portrayed in a film. The scenery was ravishing; the sets and costumes accurate enough to capture the roughness of life in Nouvelle-France (although everyone had pearly teeth.) It reminded me of the stories I would act out with my Barbie dolls as a child, usually involving dysfunctional families on the frontier. It was not the most edifying movie of the year, for the priest character is a wretch, although the nuns are sweet and holy. However, amid the melodrama, there were some plot twists which I did not expect, and the ending left us so stunned we were numb. I recommend a box of tissues for women who weep during tragic films. All in all, it did show the sacrifices of true love, and especially the heroism of a mother's love for her child. We might watch it again, although not any time soon. Share

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