As we have known since Alexandre Dumas, bravery wears a puff-sleeved shirt and a feathered hat. And the insolence has a Gascon accent. In 1844, the novelist made a forgotten gentleman of the seventeenth century the first and most famous swashbuckling hero. There have been countless adaptations of his trilogy. The latest, The Three Musketeers by Martin Bourboulon, was released in April 2023. The second instalment, centred on the life of Milady de Winter, Richelieu's devious spy, hits cinemas on 13 December (The Three Musketeers: Milady). On this occasion, two documentaries retrace the true trajectory of d'Artagnan, a destiny different from that born of the imagination of Dumas, and the regiment of musketeers. But in this duel between history and fiction, no one loses.
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The Three Musketeers: D'Artagnan (2023)
What have we not done to our musketeers? Since 1903 and Georges Méliès' first adaptation, filmmakers have often derided them or turned them into kung-fu masters. With The Three Musketeers: D'Artagnan, Martin Bourboulon wanted to give them back authenticity and panache. Thus he has summoned four of the finest blades of French cinema, Vincent Cassel, Romain Duris, Pio Marmaï and François Civil, as well as Eva Green, to star in this joyful and galloping adaptation of Dumas' work. The plot still revolves around the dangerous love affair between Anne of Austria, the wife of Louis XIII, and the Duke of Buckingham. But she also ventures into territory less exploited in novels, the war against the Protestants. The narrative efficiency and the brilliance of the actors make up for the few historical facilities and concessions made in our time.
Saturday, December 9, on OCS Max, at 21 p.m.
"Let yourself be guided" with Stéphane Bern and Lorànt
"If God came down to earth, He would have that guard." These words from a Spanish minister at the wedding of Louis XIV are quoted in this new issue of "Let yourself be guided" entitled In the Footsteps of the Musketeers. Between two gruelling demonstrations of their acting skills, Stéphane Bern and Lorànt Deutsch tell this piece of France's history by bringing to life the monuments that served as its backdrop. Here they are first on the land of Richelieu, in the commune that bears his name (Indre-et-Loire). A city that deserves to be better known, where you can still admire the garden of the cardinal's lost castle. The show, which aims to be lively and precise, then stages a duel of the time. These fights for honour were a French exception. And a serious source of concern for the royal power.
Historians Odile Bordaz and Jean-Christophe Petitfils unravel the history of the Musketeer Regiment, created to protect Louis XIII. Their feats of arms on the battlefields were worth their brilliance in the Parisian gambling dens. Alexandre Dumas did not need to press the line very much. As this lengthy documentary illustrates, their story continued into the next century. D'Artagnan, although he was unable to play the historic role with Anne of Austria attributed to him by Dumas, was a valuable henchman of Louis XIV. The Sun King also expressed his sorrow at the death, in 1673, of the former cadet of Gascony who had become captain-lieutenant of the musketeers.
Tuesday, December 12 on France 2 at 21:10 pm
The True Story of the Musketeers Documentary
Not only did Dumas exhume, inspired by a seventeenth-century work, a forgotten soldier to make him a hero of popular culture. But it also prefigured the most modern narrative constructions, explains the documentary The True Story of the Musketeers. Specialists, who also testify in "Let Yourself Be Guided", compare reality with fiction, verify the existence of Aramis or Porthos, and describe the subtleties of a power troubled by clashes with the nobility and torn by rivalries. They clearly rewind d'Artagnan's life, from his native Gers to the Château d'Angers, where he was entrusted with guarding the kingdom's most famous prisoner, Nicolas Fouquet. The trajectory of a small hand of the Grand Siècle.
Thursday, December 14 on Histoire TV at 20:50 p.m.