Monsieur N.

Monsieur N. is a 2003 British-French film directed by Antoine de Caunes. It tells the story of the last years of the life of the Emperor Napoléon (played by Philippe Torreton), who was imprisoned by the British on St Helena. Napoléon retained a loyal entourage of officers who helped him plot his escape, and evaded the attentions of Major-General Sir Hudson Lowe (Richard E. Grant), the island's overzealous Governor.

Monsieur N.
Monsieur N. movie.jpg
Monsieur N. film poster
Directed byAntoine de Caunes
Written byRené Manzor
Produced byPierre Kubel
StarringPhilippe Torreton
Richard E. Grant
Elsa Zylberstein
Jay Rodan
Frédéric Pierrot
Narrated byFrançois Marthouret
Distributed byEmpire Pictures
Release date
  • 12 February 2003 (2003-02-12)
Running time
120 min.
United Kingdom

The film suggests that Napoléon could have escaped to Louisiana, where he died, and that the body exhumed and now at Les Invalides is that of Napoléon's officer Cipriani. The film also suggests that Napoléon and his young new English wife could have attended the ceremony of "Napoléon's" burial in the Invalides.



The film was well received. As of July 2020, 71% of the 21 reviews compiled by Rotten Tomatoes are positive, with an average rating of 6.27/10. The website's critics consensus reads: "Fueled by performances as polished as its visuals, Monsieur N. is a flawed yet largely absorbing look at an imagined chapter of Napoleon's exile."[1]

The film received a positive but guarded review in The New York Times, which praised Philippe Torreton's performance but thought the narrative too complex for an audience not initiated in Napoléon's history.[2]

External linksEdit


  1. ^ "Monsieur N. (2004)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 29 July 2020.
  2. ^ "Embroidering the Fate of the First Man Who Thought He Was Napoleon," Stephen Holden, New York Times, 21 January 2005