December 22, 2022

VIFF 2022 | Vicky Krieps Reigns Over 'Corsage'

Vicky Krieps Florian Teichtmeister Marie Kreutzer | Corsage | VIFF 2022
Vancouver International Film Festival
VIFF 2022—Luxembourgish-German actress Vicky Krieps stars as the acerbic Empress Elisabeth of Austria (aka "Sisi") in this unconventional royal biopic of ennui. Corsage is a thoroughly contemporary outlook of the Empress and Queen with clever little anachronisms to tell its story of the dual monarch of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire’s sense of melancholic malaise following a year in her empty life after turning forty.

Austrian writer/director Marie Kreutzer crafts an intriguing portrait of a woman in the public eye on the verge of a total and complete mental breakdown. She becomes fed up with her status in the royal court after reigning over an Empire since marrying the Emperor as a teenager. How she refashions the well-worn period costume drama into an exploration of the monarchy—not unlike Sofia Coppola's underappreciated Marie Antoinette—provides a fresh perspective on the pressures of royal duties.

Kreutzer’s direction and the wonderfully sour performance by Krieps, a treasure who needs to be protected at all costs, breathe new energy into the otherwise typical historical royal biopic formula. However, it still maintains the expected hallmarks of high-level costume, production, and set design to make the tale of an Empress in crisis all the more relatable.

Corsage screened at the 2022 Vancouver International Film Festival as part of the Special Presentations series. It also screens at the VIFF Centre starting January 6th.

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