Oohhh, what have we here? It’s been a while since I heard news about this medieval drama directed by Ridley Scott. Production was delayed in the Spring of 2020 due to what else, the Coronavirus pandemic. What’s most notable about it is that it features the reunion of Oscar-winning BFFs Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, both as screenwriters AND co-stars.
Nicole Holofcener is also credited for writing the script, she’s too was Oscar-nominated for her screenplay Can You Ever Forgive Me? in 2019. Billed as a historical drama, the story is based on The Last Duel: A True Story of Trial by Combat in Medieval France, a 2004 book by American author Eric Jager which chronicles the last officially recognized judicial duel fought in France.
In 14th-century France, Marguerite de Thibouville claims she’s been raped by her husband’s best friend Jacques Le Gris. Her husband, knight Jean de Carrouges challenges his friend and squire, to trial by combat. It is the last legally sanctioned duel in France’s history.
It’s surely tough being a woman in the Middle Ages where as one female character puts it ‘The truth does not matter, there’s only the power of men.’ So for Marguerite to come forward with such a despicable accusation, she is also risking her own life as if her husband lost the duel, she would have been burned at the stake as punishment for her false accusation.
I’m a big fan of period pieces, so this is SO right up my alley. Of course given the huge-budget for Hollywood epics, star power matter more than historical accuracy, hence not a single French actor (or even French-speaking ones) in the main cast. Apparently Damon and Affleck were supposed to play the duelist Jean and Jacques, but Adam Driver ended up being cast in Affleck’s role because of scheduling conflict with his commitment to Adrian Lyne‘s Deep Water. That would’ve been a boon for the marketing department as the two lead characters were former best-friends-turned-enemies. They also have matching bad-movie-hairstyle here, complete with bleached blond hair and… Medieval mullets? New hair memes beckons!
I LOVE Jodie Comer since Killing Eve and I also loved her in The White Princess as Elizabeth of York, so this is certainly isn’t her first foray into historical dramas. ’tis also the year for long-haired Adam Driver and I’m SO here for it!! I’m seeing ANNETTE next week (wahoo!!) and for sure I’ll be seeing this on the big screen later this Fall! In fact, he’ll have TWO films coming out this Fall that’s both directed by Ridley-Scott, the other one is the highly-anticipated House Of Gucci.
The unstoppable 84-year-old British filmmaker is no stranger to historical epics, apparently his directorial debut The Duellists (1977) is also a duel between two people that’s also set in France. His longtime collaborator Dariusz Wolsk (Prometheus, The Counselor, The Martian) is back as cinematographer. The visuals look appropriately dirty, gritty and dark, a la Gladiator and Robin Hood, with filming locations include France and Ireland.
The Last Duel opens in theaters nationwide on October 15.
11 thoughts on “This Just In! Ridley Scott’s THE LAST DUEL trailer”
Ridley Scott is usually hit and miss but this actually looks interesting as I had to watch the trailer again on my laptop as I didn’t get a clear look on my TV because of my niece and nephew. Having saw it again. I realize who Ben Affleck is playing and he’s unrecognizable somewhat in the film. I went to Wiki for some of the historical implications about this as the story itself is more interesting as I think I want to see this as I’m a sucker for historical events as I hope it’s done right.
Yeah I was really fascinated by the real historical event too. The Middle Ages is a grim but fascinating period, I remember buying all kinds of books on The War of the Roses after seeing The White Queen. Jodie Comer was in the sequel, The White Princess. I might buy the book this is based on after reading this https://www.writersreps.com/The-Last-Duel
Affleck was supposed to play Driver’s character apparently. That would’ve been interesting given his long history w/ Damon.
I think Affleck chose to do something smaller and let Driver be given his part. That is a nice thing for Affleck to do since he had other commitments.
It definitely look like a Ridley Scott’s film but I think the casting of the three big named American actors is very distracting to me here. Especially both Damon and Affleck, I would prefer to see lesser known actors in the big male leads than 2 well known Hollywood American actors. Of course, Scott wouldn’t have gotten the big budget to do this film had he cast the less well known actors. Because of the casting, I can’t say I’m that excited to see it. I’ll wait for the reviews before seeing it on the big screen.
I hear ya Ted, I said that to Ivan too that I’d rather see some lesser known actors, I mean there are so many French or even British actors who are perhaps closer in age to the characters. I mean Affleck/Damon could still write the thing and they can still promote it as their ‘reunion’ as screenwriters. I don’t know why Affleck is the only one sporting British accent while the rest just do their own.
Phew, I loved this trailer! I’m so ready for medieval Adam Driver. Super jealous that you’ll be seeing Annette very soon but I can’t wait to read your thoughts on it!
I’m ready for Medieval Adam Driver too! He’s the reason for me to see this on the big screen, the same with Annette. I hope it’ll open in theaters in the UK as well!
This looks like quite the spectacle! Clearly big budget.
I’m not sure I’ll catch it at the cinema, though, as I’m being choosy at the moment about what I’m watching during Covid times.
Yeah, it’s Ridley Scott’s movie so likely a large budget. I’ll watch anything w/ Adam Driver these days and I love period pieces, but I totally get it about being choosey about what to see in the theater though, I’m exactly the same way, Claire.
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