I’m all for the occasional period piece, after all, Atonement was amazing. But it’s not like a go rushing to the theater to see them. However, Sofia Coppola did something interesting with Marie Antoinette that sort of divided her audience.
Marie Antoinette tells the familiar story of the titular Marie who comes from Austria to become the eventual Queen of France. Throughout it all she deals with fitting with the different customs, a husband who can’t seem to perform his duties, and eventually seeing the fall of Versailles.
What Coppola does is make the stuffy period piece into a teenage girl story similar to Sixteen Candles/Pretty in Pink/Mean Girls. The use of pop music is the obvious way she does this (Sometimes it seems forced, sometimes the use is brilliant), but what the film focuses on is how you can see this. Instead of seeing the large scale of her life, we get the little details of her trying to fit in and get used to the customs of a different country. It’s not for those looking for an accurate depiction of her life or the times, but it is perfect for those looking for something a little different.