Monday, September 14, 2015


Sorceress might provide you with an interesting watch if you have any appreciation for the Middle Ages and can enjoy historical drama.

        The film is about a 13th century Dominican Friar, Ettiene of Bourbon, who is abroad on a mission from the Pope to seek out heretics and bring them to repentance and "justice".

        Ettiene encounters a rural French village where the presiding Cure' reluctantly permits him to speak with the villagers , who unwittingly arouse his interest in a young forest woman named Elda.

   Beautiful Elda lives alone in the woods and has long tended the villagers with healing arts derived not from sorcery but from her vast store of folk lore knowledge concerning the medicinal properties of the region's herbs and berries. Elda practices the ancient ways and has a somewhat mystical aura to her, which only deepens the friar's suspicions.

      The film pursues Ettiene's persistent enquiries concerning Elda, the villagers' reliance upon her, and their superstitions related to a mysterious ancient saint and a venerated grove, all amid the larger conflict arising between the peasantry and the cruel noble who holds the land upon which they struggle to survive.

      It is not a film of much physical action, but the drama is fast paced. It was meticulously researched and is based upon the written accounts of Ettiene of Bourbon, a real 13th century friar who really did deliver up heretics to clerical and secular judgment.

  The film, well acted and filmed in a convincing locale, is artistic and liberal in it's sensibility, mostly avoiding stereotypical characterizations or simplified moralizing from either the Christian or Wiccan point of view.

     I have posted this review here because although it is set in a period somewhat later than those most likely to be found in a Fantasy Wargaming scenario, it contains flavor and ingredients which would be useful to a GM who is running a game in even earlier periods.

  Be advised that the film is delivered in French language with English subtitles.

    The full film is currently uploaded at You Tube: