03 January 2007

The Man in the Iron Mask

I just saw a film, a recent version of The Man in the Iron Mask, which seemed rather unusual for a recently made film, and reminded one of the way in which so many psychological dimensions are ironed out in the modern world.

I don’t really know modern actors, but somebody called Leonardo di Caprio was the young king and also his twin brother.

The film permitted itself to be rather glorifying of heroism and idealism, instead of insisting on prosaicness and physical degradation, as is usual these days. The Four Musketeers are in this film ("one for all, all for one") .

When d’Artagnan is trying to persuade the king’s brother, Philippe, whom they have just released from prison, to take his place because Louis is not making a good job of being the sort of ideal king they have always wanted to serve, Philippe demurs, saying he would rather just be free and live in the country tending lambs. Why should he take on this demanding and arduous role? D’Artagnan says, in effect, that one cannot go by what seems pleasant or attractive.

"We are all instruments of God", he says, "and sometimes it is very difficult but one has to keep faith."

I wonder what the affiliations of the producer and director of this film are. The modern view is so much that there cannot be any factors to be taken into account beyond what any social worker or counsellor would advise.