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Marie Antoinette 2006 PG-13 CC

An electrifying yet intimate re-telling of the turbulent life of history's favorite villainess, Marie Antoinette, who married France's young and indifferent King Louis XVI.

Starring:
Kirsten Dunst, Jason Schwartzman
Runtime:
2 hours, 2 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Drama
Director Sofia Coppola
Starring Kirsten Dunst, Jason Schwartzman
Supporting actors Judy Davis, Rip Torn, Rose Byrne, Asia Argento, Molly Shannon, Shirley Henderson, Danny Huston, Marianne Faithfull, Mary Nighy, Sebastian Armesto, Jamie Dornan, Aurore Clément, Guillaume Gallienne, James Lance, Al Weaver, Tom Hardy, Steve Coogan, Clara Brajtman
Studio Columbia Pictures
MPAA rating PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video and digital download)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Roland E. Zwick on November 7, 2006
Format: Theatrical Release
Perhaps unfairly, the name Marie Antoinette has become virtually synonymous with the upper class' indifference to the sufferings of the poor. Even all these centuries later, many people still believe that the much-maligned French queen actually uttered the words, "Let them eat cake," when confronted with the news that her subjects were starving (the phrase actually comes from a play popular at the time). Writer/director Sofia Coppola's new film, "Marie Antoinette," based on the book "Marie Antoinette: The Journey" by Antonia Fraser, seems determined to clear her name and change that perception.

In this film, Marie Antoinette is seen as a sheltered, somewhat frivolous young girl unprepared for the role history was about to thrust upon her. The movie begins at the moment when the Archduchess of Austria, aged 14, has been promised in wedlock to France's Prince Louis XVI as part of a treaty between the two countries. She is quickly whisked away to her new nation and new role, becoming a virtual prisoner to the proscribed rites and regulations of court life at Versailles in the late 18th Century.

In a wise move artistically (if not commercially), Coppola has seen fit to bleed the film of most of its potential hyperbole and melodrama, choosing instead to concentrate on the gossipy pettiness and mind-numbing rituals of royal life at that time. We see Marie completely stripped of any sense of personal privacy, as she endures the indignities of a virtual cast of thousands having a hand in her dressing herself in the morning and being constantly under the watchful eye of moral advisers on the lookout for any breach of etiquette or protocol deemed unbecoming of a queen.
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Format: Theatrical Release Verified Purchase
Booed at its Cannes premiere this year (as Anthony Lane in the "New Yorker" states: "Who was in the audience, Robespierre?"), "Marie Antoinette" is that rare bird: a film that is beautiful on the outside (everything about the physical movie is eye-poppingly gorgeous: Costumes, Food, Pastries, Shoes {yes shoes...in fact I can't remember a film in recent memory of which almost every reviewer credits the shoes to the designer: in this case, Manolo Blahnik}) as it is on the inside: studiously, exhaustively researched, thoughtfully written and impeccably directed by Sofia Coppola who gives us a revisionist portrait of M. Antoinette that is humane, heartfelt and above all measured and compassionate. There is no doubt who is in charge of this huge production and Coppola's obvious tender touch is evident everywhere throughout this film.
This "Marie Antoinette" is told from a Marie as a girl perspective: she is very young, she is giddy, very much impatient of the French Court and it's customs, very much into clothes and shoes yet she matures, has children, takes a lover grows wise, becomes the subject of gossip, learns to love Louis and becomes a loving and doting mother. This is a fully fleshed out role of a victim, really: a victim of politics, of circumstances beyond her control.
At the center of this film is the tragic, sad and revelatory Marie of Kirsten Dunst. Dunst's Marie is the outsider, reviled by the French court (called "L'Autrichienne" by most...the Austrian *itch), lost and 14 when she first arrives in France, literally stripped of everything Austrian, Dunst navigates this difficult role with ease. But this is not a surface performance...not at all. Dunst digs deep and reveals all the nuances, all the insecurities, all the strengths of one of the most hated women in all of history.
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14 Comments 245 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
I enjoyed "Marie Antoinette" a lot more than I thought I would. The film begins with Marie (Kirsten Dunst), the Austrian Archduchess, setting off to France to marry Louis-Auguste (Jason Schwartzman). Unfortunately, Marie's new husband has little interest in her or in the act of consummating their marriage, so the future queen finds herself in limbo for quite some time, as it is uncertain whether she will produce an heir to the throne and thus survive at court. Eventually Louis-Auguste comes around, and Marie gives birth to a daughter, and later a son. In the meantime, Marie becomes known as the Queen of Excesses, spending copious amounts of money on clothing and jewels instead of bothering to become acquainted with the issues of relevance to the French people. Marie enjoys parties, sweets, and even an illicit affair, but the fun comes crashing down when the monarchy falls out of favor with the citizens of France, who angrily storm the castle in an attempt on Marie's life. Eventually the royal family is forced to flee their home and go into hiding.

Obviously, the best thing about this movie is the way it looks on screen. Watching "Marie Antoinette" is like stepping into a high-end bakery and admiring a bunch of scrumptious, frilly wedding cakes. Everything about the film is absolutely beautiful: the costumes, the shoes, the palaces, the desserts. However, the dialogue in the first half of the movie is very choppy and sparse, so the only thing for the audience to do is admire all the visual beauty. After a while the script does manage to turn itself around, and I think the second half of the movie is much better in terms of storyline and character development. "Marie Antoinette" has a fabulous soundtrack that consists of mostly punk music, which is a lot of fun. Also, the cast is excellent.
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