The Affair of the Necklace
- compiled by Jeffrey Overstreet Copyright Christianity Today International
- 2001 1 Jan
Although The Affair of the Necklace is a restrained period piece, it is not doing well among religious–press critics—especially those who don't like seeing characters who behave inappropriately in the realm of romance.
Ted Baehr (
The USCC's critic is troubled instead by the characterization of a corrupt religious figurehead. This "vapid costume piece forgoes creating a true sense of the time or its political intrigue; instead, director Charles Shyer concentrates on presenting the cardinal as a greedy, drunken womanizer who consults mystics."
Mainstream critics are similarly scornful. Jessica Winter (The Village Voice) writes, "Necklace is the latest in Louis XVI costume porn. [It's] an endless illustrated Harlequin paperback of mawkish backstory and corset–popping purple prose."
But a few enjoyed it in spite of its flaws. "The film is sumptuously lavish in its gorgeous design," writes Flick Filosopher MaryAnn Johanson. "Is [this] … a Hollywood bastardization of European history? You bet. Do all the French characters speak with Masterpiece Theater English accents? Mais oui! But … oh, this is just too cheesily luscious a film for me to care much."