Fictitious Tale Surrounding a Great Playwright
Release Date: July 27, 2007
Audience: Teenagers and adults
Runtime: 120 minutes
Distributor: Sony Pictures Classics
Director: Laurent Tirard
Executive Producer: Christine De Jekel
Producer: Olivier Delbosc and Mark Missonnier
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At the age of 22, following a spell of imprisonment for debt, Moliere disappeared without a trace for several months. The filmmakers take this strange disappearance as the starting point for their movie.
In their tale, a very wealthy, and married, businessman pays Moliere’s debt in return for Moliere agreeing to train him as an actor so that he might perform a one-man play for a young woman that he wants to woo. Moliere begrudgingly agrees. Soon, he finds himself in an elaborate adventure of disguise, intrigue, passion, and danger.
In order to confound the wealthy man’s wife, Moliere pretends to be a priest, Tartuffe, who has come to live at their estate in order to tutor their youngest daughter in mathematics and theology. Portraying a man of piety proves, however, to be Moliere’s greatest acting challenge, as he finds himself falling in love with the wealthy man’s wife.
Through a comical, and sometimes dramatic, series of events, Moliere learns all the elements that will make him one of the greatest authors in the history of French theatre.
The movie, which is in French with English subtitles, is largely character driven. Within that context, it has some very solid elements dramatically as every character grows and changes dynamically throughout the story. However, to its detriment, the movie lags at times and could have taken advantage of some more editing.
Some of the moral elements also diminish what could have been a wonderful tale. There are some very strong references to Christianity, Jesus Christ, the Bible, and prayer, but all of these positive elements are countered with adultery, lying, thievery, and other anti-biblical elements. All in all, MOLIERE is a delightful movie, but MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution.
Filled with comical situations, MOLIERE the movie plays with all the gusto of a French farce. It is largely character driven, so it drags sometimes and could use some editing. There are some very strong references to Christianity, Jesus Christ, the Bible, and prayer, but all of these are countered with adultery, lying, thievery, and other anti-biblical elements. MOLIERE is a delightful movie, but MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution.