While most of his films depict contemporary Poland or the tragic, formative World War II years, Wajda has also made a number of films set in the more distant past, including his epic about early nineteenth-century Poland, Ashesand the controversial Promised Landwhich recounts the cancerous growth of late nineteenth-century Lodz into a booming industrial city. Dantonon first glance, might seem to be one of these straightforward period films, and, strangely, not about Poland at all.
Plot[ edit ] The film begins in Paris in the cold spring of when the Reign of Terror is in full swing, with vehicles entering the city being searched and long lines of citizens grumbling in the rain as they wait to buy scarce bread.
Ill in his flat, Robespierre sees Danton in the street, just returned from the country and being acclaimed by the hungry and dispirited people as their hero.
While Robespierre is being tended by his barber, his friend Saint-Just comes in and urges him to have Danton guillotined. He ignores him and goes to a meeting of the Committee of Public Safetythe effective government of France, where other members also push for the elimination of Danton. Robespierre resists, because Danton is so popular with the ordinary people and is his friend.
Danton disapproves, even though friends warn him that Robespierre is planning to have him jailed and he should strike first. Danton is positive that the influence of his newspaper, Le Vieux Cordelierand the support of the people will keep him safe.
That night, Danton asks Robespierre to an elaborate dinner in a private room of a restaurant, fortifying himself in advance with copious wine. Robespierre refuses to eat and insists on a serious talk. He asks Danton to join his cause and stop fighting him, because he does not want to be forced to have Danton executed.
Once again, Danton refuses to join their illegal venture. Robespierre, having failed with Danton, then goes to the house of Desmoulins, who is furious that his printing business has been destroyed and refuses to talk to him.
Robespierre tries to convince him that Danton is exploiting him, but is ignored. He goes to the Committee of Public Safety and orders a warrant for the arrest that night of Danton, Desmoulins, Westermann and several of their associates.
Though Danton could still rally support, he does not want to cause more bloodshed and accepts arrest, claiming that his oratory and the affection of the people will protect him. At the National Convention in the morning, members are outraged at the arrests, but Robespierre simply justifies his action by stating that Danton is an enemy of the Republic and must be tried regardless of his popularity.
Having escaped arrest, Bourdon hastily changes sides and backs Robespierre. When the trial opens before the Revolutionary Tribunalonly seven jurors can be found who will agree to vote Danton guilty but it continues regardless.
Danton keeps breaking order to address the spectators, and the prosecutor Fouquier is unhappy because he has insufficient grounds for a conviction. Robespierre gets the Committee to issue a decree that anyone who speaks out of turn will be removed from court. Within minutes, all the accused have been bundled out and the verdict of guilty is read.
On the day before their execution Danton is depressed, not because of his death but because he feels that he has failed the people. The noble ideals of the Revolution in the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizenrecited to him by a child forced to learn it by heart, are fatally compromised.Nov 18, · The two poles of the French Revolution were the passionate idealism of the republic and the utter finality of the guillotine.
"Danton" finds itself comfortable at those two extremes and leaves the parts in the middle -- the facts, the issues, the minor personalities -- to the historians.4/4. Works from Les Misirables by Victor Hugo to Citizens by Simon Schama have been inspired by the French Revolution.
Now available for the first time in years, The Days of the French Revolution brings to life the events that changed the future of Western civilization.
As compelling as any fiction thriller, this real-life drama moves from the storming of the Bastille to the doomed court of Louis. ACHTUNG! THE DESERT TIGERS () - Lame Italian WWII war flick which, for about 45 minutes, veers off into the Naziploitation genre that those spaghetti-benders were so fond of during the mid-to-late 70's (hence, it's inclusion here).
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Haitian Revolution; Part of the Atlantic Revolutions, French Revolutionary Wars, and Napoleonic Wars.: Battle at San Domingo, a painting by January Suchodolski, depicting a struggle between Polish troops in French service and the slave rebels and freed revolutionary soldiers.
The more fleshed-out villain will have some specific perception of what is wrong with the world and believe that a strong central authority with vision and strength of purpose can set it right.
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Because it is oh-so-nice to discover new movies to stream, I’ve put together a list of period films and costume dramas that are currently available to watch now by those of you with a Hulu subscription.