All the big names involved in the upcoming movie The Last Duel energizes the project. Ridley Scott directs from a screenplay co-written by Nicole Holofcener. That’s an interesting pairing, further still when you consider that this is a period piece set in 14th century France. As for the central cast, we’ve got Adam Driver, Jodie Comer, Matt Damon, and Ben Affleck; the latter two also co-wrote the script with Holofcener. In short, if nothing else, The Last Duel is working with high-caliber star power. As for its central conceit, that’s when things get somewhat loaded. You can see for yourself in the very first trailer for the film, newly available to watch below.
The story centers on Medieval lady Marguerite de Carrouges’ (Comer) accusation of a local nobleman (Driver) of violence against her. The nobleman in question, one Jacques Le Gris, denies the accusations. Thusly, Marguerite’s husband Jean (Damon), a knight, challenges Jacques to a battle to the death. Convoluting the matter further is Jean’s pride and possessiveness of his wife, and what’s more his longtime friendship with Jacques. But perhaps the most complicated ordeal we have at hand is the hair and makeup job on Affleck. Enjoy an eyeful of blonde Medieval Ben.
Given the subject matter—and, again, the specific casting of Hollywood mega-men like Affleck and Damon—The Last Duel is likely to shoulder a lot of sociopolitical weight. How that manifests, both on-screen and off—we’ll see.
The story in fact derives from the 2004 nonfiction book The Last Duel: A True Story of Trial by Combat in Medieval France by Eric Jager. The central face-off in the film is regarded as the last duel legally ordained by the nation of France.
The Last Duel will hit theaters on October 15.