His tiny head nestled in a wild bird’s nest of a wig, Louis XIV is dying. He is surrounded by his court, his minions, and his physicians. Efforts to save him grow increasingly futile. Albert Serra’s The Death of Louis XIV is just what the title says, and it runs for nearly two hours. It is not a movie for every taste; in fact, it is as close to watching paint dry as a film can get. I mean that in a good way.
I emerged from The Death of Louis XIV as from a dream, or nightmare, or maybe it was a farce. I have ...