The Conquest (2011) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Conquest (2011)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

The Conquest chronicles the volatile right-leaning Nicolas Sarkozy's startling rise to become President of France and the emotional and psychological stakes involving the conquest of power. On the day the diminutive Sarkozy conquered his ultimate ambition, his wife who for twenty years had struggled to pull the man she loved from the shadow into the light walked out on him for another man. -- (C) Music Boxmore
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Patrick Rotman, Michaël Darmon
In Theaters:
On DVD: Apr 10, 2012
Box Office: $0.2M
Music Box Films - Official Site

News & Interviews for The Conquest

Critic Reviews for The Conquest

All Critics (31) | Top Critics (18)

The Sarkozy story glistens, snakelike.

Full Review… | June 19, 2013
The New Republic
Top Critic

The dialogue is punchy, but the film lacks visual personality, and the insights into Sarkozy and France as a whole don't cut very deep.

Full Review… | March 7, 2012
The Atlantic
Top Critic

"The Conquest" is like a French restaurant that serves small portions of tart appetizers and calls them freedom fries, yet begrudgingly we must salute the gall.

Full Review… | February 24, 2012
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic

Too often ... the jaunty, overeager background music seems to be underscoring jokes the action doesn't provide.

Full Review… | February 16, 2012
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

Sarkozy seems to mean exactly what he says, even when he's lying for his cause, and Podalydès has the skill to demonstrate that.

Full Review… | January 26, 2012
Seattle Times
Top Critic

The film is a vehement drama and a fitfully amusing snark fest set to Nicola Piovani's jaunty circus music. It winds up only half-succeeding at both.

Full Review… | January 5, 2012
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Conquest

As Nicholas Sarkozy(Denis Podalydes) wakes up on election day in 2007, it starts out well enough as he wins the vote in New York and Israel. But he is still worrying about the whereabouts of his wife Cecilia(Florence Pernel) and more importantly whether or not she will be voting with him. However, that is nothing compared to five years previously when President Jacques Chirac(Bernard Le Coq), feeling Sarkozy would only lose in a national election due to his conservative politics, chooses Dominique de Villepin(Samuel Labarthe) to be Prime Minister, leaving the Ministry of Interior to Sarkozy.

"The Conquest" seeks to dramatize Sarkozy's rise to power by also undermining him by showing that the only way he got elected was in the media's preference of personality over policy. While possibly not wrong, it is a neat trick that the movie never quite pulls off, as it also falls into the same trap by mostly avoiding politics except by mentioning Sarkozy is pro-American.(Which I guess might be the same as being pro-French here in the States, I suppose.) As far as being satire, not much, except for the jaunty soundtrack and one masterful shot that starts with Sarkozy eating alone, before panning to the press who then rush off to cover Villepin on the beach. The only irony comes when Chirac says the socialists will never win an election in France. Who knew? Plus, Podalydes gives one of those performances usually seen on Saturday Night Live where a performer does an impression by picking on a singular personal tic and then hammering it into the bedrock.

Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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