Ridley Scott and historical epics don’t have the best relationship. His last two films in the genre, Kingdom of Heaven and Exodus: Gods and Kings, were torn apart by the studios before release and didn’t land with much critical praise. Hopefully, Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel, which just landed its first trailer, will fare a bit better.
The film’s title is quite literal, as this was indeed the last sanctioned duel to take place in France. The titular duel refers to one between Jean de Carrouges (Matt Damon) and Jacques Le Gris (Adam Driver) during the 100 years war. The two friends become enemies after Carrouges’ wife, Marguerite (Jodie Comer), publicly accuses Gris of attacking her in her home. The fallout from the accusation sends shockwaves through France, and the film is clearly focusing on Marguerite’s unfair struggle to speak the truth despite every institution standing against her, something unfortunately still relevant today.
Ben Affleck also has a turn in the film as Count Pierre d’Alençon. He and Damon reunited to write the screenplay with Nicole Holofcener. Based on the book The Last Duel: A True Story of Crime, Scandal, and Trial by Combat in Medieval France, the film looks like a mix between a true crime movie and a bombastic historical epic. Ridley Scott is directing and producing The Last Duel.
Affleck, Damon, and Holofcener have been hard at work on the screenplay for many years, but the film finally came together and pulled in an all-star cast. Hopefully, Scott has been able to deliver the picture he wanted to to the big screen. He’s done some great stuff recently with Raised by Wolves.
The Last Duel will release on October 15, 2021.