Cyrano de Bergerac | Chicago Reader

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Director Jean-Paul Rappeneau's 1990 adaptation of Edmond Rostand's loving late-19th-century send-up of 17th-century romance was a huge success in France, and it's easy to see why. Gerard Depardieu invests the poetic, freethinking title chevalier with a hulking earthiness, bringing to the action scenes a massive athleticism and to the love play a brooding pathos. However, despite a picturesque setting and robust alternation of swordplay and amour, the film never does justice to the multiple levels of Rostand's surprisingly complex work.

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