Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Advocate

In mid-fifteenth century France, young lawyer Richard Courtois (played by equally young Colin Firth) leaves behind the decadence and corruption of the big city to live a more authentic life and do some real good in the country town of Abbeville, only to find himself embroiled in defending a woman accused of witchcraft, a farmer who killed his wife's lover--and a pig accused of murdering a Jewish boy.

I enjoyed this movie, but I'm not sure what to make of it.  I ordered it on DVD for the library where I work after the IMDb featured it as their movie of the day; their review remarked that the courtroom trial of the pig is a real giggle to watch, and I figured that any movie with Colin Firth naked couldn't be a total waste of time.  A couple of other reviews I read treated it as a farce, or a satire, and a lot of it was pretty funny.  I particularly liked the exchange between Courtois and the local priest, Albertus, played by Ian Holm, after Courtois learns that Albertus coerces women in the confessional to sleep with him:

Courtois:  Hell must be full of priests.  
Albertus:  Can't move for 'em.

But the overall tone is really too dark for comedy.  Interesting film, though.

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