Maeve Maddox’s film guide to six well known movies about Joan of Arc is now available on Kindle.
A Joan for All Seasons: Joan of Arc in History and the Movies, compares the historical facts about Joan of Arc with interpretations of her life by six twentieth-century film-makers.
Although historically a genuine military leader who fought with lance and sword and learned to sight gunpowder weapons with devastating accuracy, cinematic Joan pines for love, longs for domesticity, defers to men, and explodes into bouts of mindless rage. The implicit message in all six films is that women are expected to behave in certain ways, and those who don’t will be made to regret it.
A Joan for All Seasons is organized into two main parts.
Part One, “Historical Joan,” provides the facts about the peasant girl from her first appearance in history in 1428 to her death at the stake in 1431. It also provides a brief account of the royal in-fighting that caused and prolonged the Hundred Years’ War.
Part Two, “Cinematic Joan,” analyzes each of the six films in terms of historical accuracy and intended message. These six productions span the 20th century, beginning with Cecil B. DeMille’s Joan the Woman, released in 1917, to Luc Besson’s Jeanne d’Arc, released in its English version in 1999 as The Messenger.
Although some of these films are mentioned in guides to movies about war or movies set in the Middle Ages, A Joan for All Seasons is the only guide that discusses all six of these Joan of Arc films in one volume.
A Joan for All Seasons is available at Amazon in both print and Kindle editions.
Maeve Maddox lives in Fayetteville, Arkansas. She writes about language, education, and popular culture. Her websites are www.americanenglishdoctor.com and www.maevemaddox.com/.