Synopsis by Michael Hastings
Long-established director Emir Kusturica makes his acting debut in Patrice Leconte's 19th century tale of a loyal, strong-willed woman who follows her soldier husband to a desolate French territory off the coast of Newfoundland. Madame La (Juliette Binoche) lives in marital bliss on the island of Saint-Pierre with her loving, oddball husband (Daniel Auteuil), simply called "the Captain" by his charges. Their world is upset one night, however, when two visiting sailors on a bender murder a local citizen. Neel (Kusturica) is sentenced to death, but the other one dies in a carriage accident before reaching prison. As the island waits for a guillotine (or "widow") to be shipped from the French government, Madame La does her best to convince the townspeople that Neel is genuinely good of heart and doesn't deserve a bloody fate. La Veuve de Saint-Pierre marks the second time that Auteuil has worked with director Leconte: their first effort, La Fille Sur la Pont, earned him a Best Actor award at the Cesars, France's equivalent to the Academy Awards. La Veuve screened at the 2000 Cannes and Toronto film festivals.
execution, murder, love-triangle, eccentric, officer, wife, capital-punishment, guillotine