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Monsieur Vincent

Lise DelamareGabrielle DorziatAimé Clariond

Director: Maurice Cloche

rated: NR

- Suitable for Children

released: July 15, 2008

Rating: Not rated: write a review
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One of the finest biopics of a religious figure, Monsieur Vincent is a moving paean to its titular character that avoids the trap of painting its subject as a saint rather than a man. It's one of the film's greatest achievements that it acknowledges Vincent DePaul's ambivalent feelings about the poor -- that they are "unjust and foul-mouthed," yet this just means that one must work harder to love them more. Director Maurice Cloche effectively captures the stark reality of 17th century life, using it as a frame to demonstrate how impressive DePaul's achievements were. He also makes Monsieur Vincent an epic, a film that is much larger than life but that does not fall prey to ponderousness or excess. Claude Renoir's gorgeous, evocative cinematography is an enormous asset, setting mood and atmosphere and imbuing even great sweeps with an underlying feeling of intimacy. Cloche is also blessed by his DePaul, the remarkable Pierre Fresnay, whose moving performance is the tent pole upon which the film hangs. Stirring and extremely affecting, Monsieur Vincent is a glorious cinematic experience. Craig Butler, All Movie Guide

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