Bilingual Social Sciences Resources for Secondary Education
FRENCH REVOLUTION ON FILMS
Here you have the trailers of films depicting the French Revolution
Starring the renowned French actor Gérard Depardieu as the title character, this film is set during the infamous “Reign of Terror” period of the French Revolution, when many so-called enemies of the revolution were executed by guillotine. Directed by Academy Award-winning Polish director Andrzej Wajda, the film tells the story of Georges Danton, one of the original leaders of the French Revolution, who was later executed on the orders Maximilien de Robespierre.
MARIE ANTONIETTE (2006)
While any film that is set in the time period of the French Revolution and uses a 1980s-era soundtrack should obviously not be regarded as historically accurate, this Sofia Coppola-directed film does give viewers a general concept of the luxurious lifestyle enjoyed by the French royalty at the time. For a country that was going through a time of widespread deprivation, the decadence of the royal court was regarded as especially offensive to revolutionarie.
JEFFERSON IN PARIS (1995)
The time period immediately before the start of the French Revolution is the setting for this production about Thomas Jefferson’s stint as Ambassador of the United States in France. While much of the film focuses on Jefferson’s relationship with a slave named Sally Hemmings, this historical drama also portrays the root causes of the French Revolution by showing the contrast between the opulent French royal court and the country’s poverty-stricken peasants.
THE NIGHT OF VARENNES (1982)
Based on a novel by French author Catherine Rihoit,That Night in Varennesmixes historical fact and fiction. The main story revolves around a meeting between several famous historical figures from the French Revolution era, including Giacomo Casanova, Thomas Paine, and Sophie de la Borde. The group is following King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette as the royal couple is attempting to flee the increasingly hostile revolutionaries in Paris. While the French royals’ failed escape is based on the real “Flight to Varennes” event in 1791, the meeting between the other historical figures is completely fictionalized.