Film d’Art

L’Assassinat du Duc de Guise
R: André Calmettes. B: Henri Lavedan. D: Charles Le Bargy, Albert Lambert, Gabrielle Robinne. M: Camille Saint-Saëns. P: Pathé (SCAGL). Fr 1908

“Here, formal and historical closure coincide in the violent death of the central male character and establish a precedent for ending most films in the genre. Following the principles of classical unity, Lavedan‘s original scenario confines the action to the morning of that day, within studio set decors representing six seperate rooms in the Chateau du Blois. Although dependent on the conventional practice of using painted flats for walls, these studio spaces are specially decorated to achieve a sense of historical verisimilitude – with actual period furnishings, some of which extend offscreen to the left or right, richly designed costumes, intricate tile floors, and a huge stone fireplace into which the body is tossed at the end. The acting of Le Bargy (Henri III), Albert Lambert (Duc de Guise), Robinne (Marquise de Noirmoutier) and others (…) is indeed economical and restrained, especially in comparison to that of earlier films in the genre.”
Richard Abel: The Ciné Goes to Town. Berkeley-Los Angeles-London 1998, p. 248 f.

>>> Calmettes’ Le retour d’Ulysse on this site