Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Released generally as Cardinal Richelieu, this George Arliss vehicle was based on the popular 19th-century blank-verse play by Lord Edward Bulwer-Lytton. Downplaying the more villainous aspects of the character, Arliss portrays Richelieu as a dry-witted foxy-grandpa type, manipulating the well-meaning but often ineffectual French monarch Louis XIII (Edward Arnold) and cleverly outmaneuvering his scurrilous enemies, especially Louis' power-hungry brother Gaston (Francis Lister). Richelieu even finds time to smooth the romantic path of the young lovers, his young ward Lenore (Maureen O'Sullivan) and handsome Andre de Pons (Cesar Romero) -- though he does this mainly to suit his own political and ecumenical purposes. Highlights include the famous scene in which the wily Richelieu defeats his foes by threatening them with eternal damnation! Richelieu was George Arliss's last American film; henceforth, he would appear only in British productions.
leader, religion, artist, control, espionage, history, power, Prime-Minister, talent