Movies

Discovering the French Renaissance through older films

Screen shot taken from You Tube video

Screen shot taken from You Tube video

If you’re looking for older films about the French Renaissance, it’s hit or miss outside of streaming services like Netflix. You can check out YouTube, but sometimes there’s a murky question over whether the channel has the right to post a film or not.

Screenshot taken from You Tube Video

Screenshot taken from You Tube Video

Screen shot from You Tube

Screen shot from You Tube

For another perspective on Henry IV and his ill-fated wives, you can currently catch , in French. The movie’s not as visually stunning as either of the Queen Margot remakes, but it does include both Gabrielle d’Estress and Marie de Medici.

Screen Cap from You Tube

more information

Screen Cap from You Tube

Luckily, you can find legal copies of The Princess of Cleves. That’s a relief to me, because I first heard of the movie by watching it on YouTube, and it’s since been taken down. You can order it now from retailers including Amazon.

It’s frustrating trying to find these out of print and hard-to-find films about the era, because the most accessible places usually don’t have legal clearance to post them. Still, if you’re lucky, you can find a few movies that will feed your fix for sixteenth-century French splendor. If all else, fails, Netflix still carries Reign, but if you’re a stickler for historical or costume accuracy, Reign just isn’t your bag.