The story is set during the Restoration era where the lovely and independent Dona St. Columb, married to a much older man, decides to returns to her family Cornwall state with her children. Arriving there, she discovers that a group of French pirates settled down in her lands. Infuriated, at first, she soon meets Jean-Benoît Aubéry, the leader of the group and a very charismatic man.
I watched this TV movie and read the book for the first time in my late teens and while I kept a good memory about Donna and Jean's story, I do remember this being loosely based in the book.
The cast was very well chosen and everyone was quite good in their roles. I'll have to start talking about the very talented Tara Fitzgerald who is a wonderful Donna St Columb combining a provocative attitude with a vulnerability and intelligence that made her my favourite character of the movie (and book).
Now, I had some troubles with our Jean Aubéry, played by Anthony Delon. I couldn't watch some of the scenes without cringing a little, especially the ones with Tara Fitzgerald. In those moments his acting skills look weaker... In the end, he manages to deliver a satisfying performance and, I must say, he's a very agreeable eye candy.
I don't know many period dramas set during the Restoration, so it was nice to watch this movie again, admire the gorgeous costumes and learning more about the political intrigues of the time.
Finally, the real treasure of this movie: Cornwall (Padstow, Helston, St Clement and Charlestown). The images are absolutely breathtaking ! After watching the movie, I immediately wanted to buy a ticket and spend some weeks there walking on those beaches.
The Frenchman's Creek is quite the passionate and romantic story, the perfect movie for a rainy Sunday afternoon. Recommended to all period drama addicts, but maybe not to the Daphne Du Maurier die-hard fans.
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