When I finally did see it I LOVED it! Probably could have used more gratuitous 80's music, but come to think of it most things could. My only misgiving about the film was I knew that I was seeing the Hollywood version Marie Antoinette. While that might have been okay for a teenager who had not done their required reading and had a report due on the subject the next day, I on the other hand wanted to find out the back story and why in this instance all roads led to the scaffold for Marie.
I started my quest by reading Marie Antoinette Portrait of an Average Woman. I thought it sounded interesting since my perception of the young queen was completely opposite from what the title of the book suggested. The book definitely begins at the beginning, in Austria where we meet Marie Antoinette as a child and follows her life step by step as it moves toward the inevitable. One of my favorite elements is that the book contains correspondence between her and her mother. What could be more telling of a person than that? I almost could not bring myself to read the last two chapters because I was so moved by everything that had led up to that point. I knew the outcome. Not even Hollywood tried to change that. But I still thought that if I prolonged finishing it, that everything would somehow be alright... for me, for history, and for Marie.
My husband asked why I was so interested in Marie all of a sudden. I can't quite put my finger on it, but I think it has something to do with Marie having been only thirty-eight, almost the age that I am now, and how that in many respects she was just an average woman...
Alright, so I have some true background now, which I did not receive from Hollywood or Classics Illustrated. Next stop in my Marie Antoinette tour de force... A Scented Palace.