The Annunciation of Marie
|The Annunciation of Marie|
|Directed by||Alain Cuny|
|Produced by||Hugues Desmichelle|
|Written by||Paul Claudel
|Music by||François-Bernard Mache|
|Distributed by||Astral Bellevue Pathe Ltd
Les Films Sans Frontieres
The Annunciation of Marie is the English-language title of the 1991 critically acclaimed French-Canadian film L'Annonce faite à Marie, an adaptation of the play of the same name by Paul Claudel.
The director of this film, noted French stage and film actor Alain Cuny, was for years a friend and associate of the diplomat, playwright and symbolist poet Paul Claudel (1868-1955), whose sister Camille was perhaps better known outside the French-speaking world. In fact, one of Cuny's last movie performances was in the 1988 film Camille Claudel, based on the sculptress' life. Before he died in 1955, the playwright asked that Cuny direct a picture based on his play L'Annonce faite a Marie, and in this somewhat stage-bound production, he is honoring that request. It was filmed in Montreal, Quebec, Canada and Civry-la-Foret, France.
Set at the time of the Crusades, it tells the story of love and tragedy, intermingled with mysticism. Jacques is betrothed to marry Violane, a beautiful and gentle woman. When she discovers that she has leprosy, however, the marriage is off, and she retires to a life of prayer at an isolated hermitage. Instead, Jacques marries her sister Mara. When Jacques and Mara's child dies shortly after birth, Mara implores her saintly sister to come out of isolation to bring her child back to life.