The Man in the Iron Mask (1998)

Aka: The Mask of Dumas

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A lad jousting with his tutor is kidnaped and carried to the Bastille where his head is locked in an iron mask. Jump ten years: Musketeers return from war in Morocco to find Paris starving while Louis XIV and his retinue idle at Duke Fouquet's estate. Louis is enamored with his host's virginal daughter, Valliere, herself in love with Athos. The queen mother calls the Jesuit Aramis to her deathbed to confess that Louis has a twin, "a second born, he was first conceived, the oldest and true heir," the man in the iron mask. Aramis secures his release and hides him while Porthos and Athos school him for his destiny. ...
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D'Artagnan remains loyal to Louis: love, schemes and politics entwine.
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De enige echte troonopvolger van Frankrijk wordt in de Bastille gevangen gehouden, waar hij jarenlang een vreselijk zwaar ijzeren masker moet dragen. Op bevel van de stervende koningin, moet de musketier Aramis de gemaskerde man uit de gevangenis bevrijden. Tot dan gaat Frankrijk gebukt onder de tirannie van de wrede Lodewijk de veertiende. Die stelt alles in het werk om zijn troon te beschermen. De man met het ijzeren masker leert ondertussen, geholpen door de musketiers, hoe hij het gevecht om de macht moet aangaan.

Actor-director William Richert (Winter Kills), who directed the late River Phoenix in A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon (1988), originally planned this low-budget adaptation of Alexandre Dumas' 1848-50 classic adventure, as a vehicle for River Phoenix. Casting his son, Nick Richert, in the dual role of Philippe and King Louis XIV, he continued on with the project, despite the competition of the heavily promoted, more lavish MGM production scheduled for release almost the same month. The future King of France is kidnapped as a boy, put inside an iron mask, and imprisoned in the Bastille. Court intrigue then pla...
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ces his younger twin on the throne as Louis XIV. A decade later, the queen confesses on her deathbed, revealing the truth to Count Aramis (William Richert), who recruits the three Musketeers (Edward Albert, Dennis Hayden, Rex Ryon) in order to bring truth and justice to the situation. Filmed at the historic Mission Inn in Riverside, California. Previous film versions: the 1939 James Whale version with Louis Hayward, the 1976 TV movie with Richard Chamberlain, and Ken Annakin's The Fifth Musketeer (1978, aka Behind the Iron Mask) with Beau Bridges, Lloyd Bridges, Ursula Andress, Cornel Wilde, Jose Ferrer, Rex Harrison, and Olivia de Havilland.
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