During the 18th and 19th centuries France was a very interesting place to live so long as you weren’t looking for a quiet life. The country was frequently at war with its neighbors and with itself as Protestants fought Catholics, peasants fought landlords, workers fought in the streets, and…well there was a lot of fighting going on.
The great French writers of the time took these events and created some of the most dramatic literature ever. Among my personal favorites are:
Les Miserables – The story of Jean Valjean and his efforts to escape his persecutor, Inspector Javert. Set between 1815 and 1832 the novel shows the difficulties faced by many ordinary French people after the collapse of the French Republic.
The Count of Monte Cristo – Edmond Dantes is unjustly imprisoned for 14 years. Following his escape he amasses a huge fortune and then uses it to wreak revenge on those he feel betrayed him.
The novels above have been adapted for TV and film many times. I’ve put a few movies and trailers below for you to enjoy.
Les Miserables – Musical Trailer
Les Miserables – Movie
The Count of Monte Cristo – Movie
The Three Musketeers – Movie
The Phantom of the Opera – Musical
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
The Man in the Iron Mask