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Film Review

By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat

 

Joan of Arc
Directed by Christian Duguay
Artisan 09/99 DVD/VHS Feature Film
Not Rated

Joan of Arc remains one of the most fascinating heroines of history. Her life has been the subject of many films, plays, novels, and poems. Some see her as a champion of patriotism and feminism; others claim her as a martyr of conscience. She was formally canonized in 1920 even though she had been condemned by the Catholic Church and executed as a heretic at the age of 19 in 1431.

Christian Duguay directs this epic drama, which appeared on CBS Television in May 1999. Leelee Sobieski (A Soldier's Daughter Never Cries) plays Joan of Arc as a valiant young woman whose ardent faith and courage are evident on both the battlefield and in an ecclesiastical court. Jacqueline Bisset and Powers Boothe play her peasant parents in southern France. Robert Loggia is the parish priest who first hears of "the voices" calling her to save France. Neil Patrick Harris is featured as the French king who betrays Joan after she makes it possible for him to ascend the throne. Peter O'Toole is a stern bishop who turns out to be the young woman's most formidable adversary. Peter Strauss plays a military leader who is amazed by Joan's charisma.

 

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Reviews and database copyright 1970 2012
by Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
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