This is a far better film than I remembered. It helps to have an interest in the story of Joan of Arc before sitting down to this. There is some great performances, and some lighter moments to this portrayal, and the comradre between Joan and the soldiers is well done. Now of course every film has scenes or parts where you would prefer things done differently, for example some parts of the vision scenes which seem a little cheesy and maybe out of kilter, but overall this film is brilliant, and treats the story intelligently and respectfully.
'MAID OF ORLEANS' - '15th CENTURY FRENCH HEROINE' - (JEANNE d'ARC) 15th Century France in both political and religious turmoil, there has been 100 years of war with the English, it is desperate times. Inspiration, a saviour is needed to rid the lands of the invaders who roam freely. A young peasant girl who had been born in 'Domremy' in 1412 was to emerge from obscurity to give France hope. At the age of 13 'Joan' began to have visions, when finding a sword and returning home she finds her village under attack from a group of English Knights, 'Joan's' sister sacrificed herself to save young 'Joan' 'Joan' believed at the age of barely 16 that she'd been given a mission by God to lead her Countrymen to victory and rid the land of the English....already building a reputation and following she seeks out at 'Chinon' the 'Daufin' - 'Charles' (John Malcovich) the would be King of France if the English King 'Henry VI' relinquished his claim. 'Joan' (Milla Jovovich) asks to lead his army against the occupying forces, could she convince 'Charles' that her visions and mission were from God ?....truth is, he and France were desperate to believe that salvation was possible. After a series of victories over the English 'Charles' does indeed exceed to the Throne, her task not over she asks for a army to complete her mission but will be refused. 'Joan' during the battles and more so when facing trial for heresy struggles with her conscience and is often seen talking to an imaginary figure played by 'Dustin Hoffman' She had been a thorn in the side of the English forces and at the age of just 19 will face their brutal justice. This interpretation of the legendary French heroin does approach the story in a very different way to earlier efforts seeing 'Joan' frequently questioning her motives for her actions and interpretation of her visions though never straying from her faith. The film probably drifts from historic accuracy but as an epic spectacle wins hands down with many well staged brutal battle sequences and many an outstanding performance none more so than that of 'Milla Jovovich' Quite a time ago since last viewing the film, glad i took time out to do so again.....well worth viewing.