This is the plot of The Last Duel, the new film by Ridley Scott from 14 October to the cinema. The director catapults us into the Middle Ages by telling a chivalrous epic full of ladies and knights. And the work he does is not to be discarded at all. Indeed, the ploy of telling three stories through three different points of view this time turns out to be successful and becomes the engine of the entire film. What is striking about The Last Duel is the fact that the three views on the story never become redundant but serve to give completeness to the story. The work on the historical context is also appreciable. Ridley Scott outlines a faithful fresco of the Middle Ages, with attention to detail and reconstructions of uses and customs. In addition, he also indulges in scenes of real fights which, although marginal in the film, are shown in all the rawness and gloom typical of the “dark ages”.
The main cast with Matt Damon, Adam Driver and Jodie Comer is spot on and gives good performances. Even Ben Affleck, here in the guise of Pierre D’Alencon, is certainly well placed and after the last few years in which we have seen the latter especially in the guise of Batman or on some rotogravure together with the new (old) flame Jennifer Lopez it’s a pleasure framed in a new role, not at all obvious.
Leave fights, weapons and blood aside, The Last Duel reflects on the duel of God: the outcome of the dispute did not depend on the skills of the fighters but on a sort of divine judgment that decided the result, perfectly inserted in the juridical order. Ridley Scott manages to describe all of this credibly and clearly. It is undeniable how, from a certain moment on, moreover, some cinematographic themes seem to reflect or launch overbearing jabs at a certain cinematographic establishment and at disruptive themes such as the “MeToo” phenomenon.
Overall, despite not being a blockbuster and still having some cumbersome moments, The Last Duel is an enjoyable film to see in the hall.