Mon, Jul 17, 2000

: The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc

Director: Luc Besson

This film astonished me. I’d expected something terrible, based on the vicious remarks of the critics, but this film wasn’t bad at all. In fact, I liked it. It’s not a great film, but even the somewhat miscast Milla Jovovich is likable as Joan. I wasn’t impressed with the overdone dream sequences (which are strangely unexciting and listless) or the elaborate but boring battle scenes, but by the story. The line between faith and insanity is a narrow one, and every religious person has at one time or another questioned their faith, asking the same questions Joan asks herself in this film. How many of us could face a panel of learned judges and defend our faith? The power of the story of Joan comes from her mystery: was she really a messenger from God? Insane? Self-deluded? Asking those questions of Joan tests our own faith, and forces us to answer the same questions about ourself.

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