Tuesday, May 19, 2009

It always amazes me when I come here to see how long it has been since my last visit. But return I have, although not to document the misadventures of my own life but the adventures of others.

In particular one Emile Zola. Zola was a writer, a playwright, a champion of truth and the rights of the innocent in a time when the innocent, or guilty for that matter, had very few rights at all.

***SPOILER ALERT*** Skip the next paragraph and go to the following one if you hate when people spoil the end of the movie for you.

Emile Zola lived in France from 1840 until his death in 1902, except of course for the brief time he spent in London when he had to flee the country of his birth or be jailed. Jailed for speaking out and accusing the leaders of the French Army of convicting an innocent man of treason and covering up their mistake by acquitting the guilty party in order to save face and avoid a scandal.


Best Picture winner in 1937, The Life Of Emile Zola, described the life and times of one of the most famous writers of the late 19th Century. Known as the creator of literary naturalism a form of writing that exposes plot more than characters and plays up the dirty or negative side of life rather than romanticizing life. The movie although admittedly fictionalizing Zola's life shows a interesting portrayal of his life and the court case that defined his spirit for uncovering and trumpeting the truth. And it accomplishes what a biography should do, which is make you more curious about the life of the portrayed individual, while entertaining it's audience. It's 1937 folks so it there isn't any edge of your seat tension but it was well done and definitely worth 116 minutes of your time.

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