Walk with love and death

Walk with Love and Death ( A Walk with Love and Death ) is an American film directed by John Huston , released in 1969 , based on a work by Hans Koningsberger .


Hundred Years War , spring 1358 in the Parisian basin in France, during the most important medieval jacqueries .

Heron de Foix, a student, leaves Paris alone to join the sea, a promise of freedom. The roads are strewn with corpses, the only peasant he crosses and with whom he speaks will be slaughtered by the soldiers for having sold him wine. During a stage at the castle of Pierre de Saint-Jean, he meets Claudia, to whom he asks to be the lady who will look after his journey. At night, while on the beach, near the goal, he learns that the castle of St. John was attacked and burned by the peasants and its occupants killed. He turns around and returns to the castle he finds destroyed. A maid tells her that Claudia is alive, a refugee not far from there. He goes to join her and they both take the road, always crossing death.

Technical sheet

  • Title: Walk with love and death
  • Original title: A Walk with Love and Death
  • Director: John Huston
  • Scenario: Hans Koningsberger and Dale Wasserman
  • Music: Georges Delerue
  • Photography: Ted Scaife
  • Editing: Russell Lloyd
  • Production: Carter DeHaven for 20th Century Fox
  • Country of origin: United States
  • Format: Colors (DeLuxe) – 16 mm
  • Genre : Drama
  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • Release date: 1969


  • Anjelica Huston : Claudia
  • Assi Dayan : Heron of Foix (under the name of Assaf Dayan)
  • Anthony Higgins : Robert de Loris (under the name of Anthony Corlan)
  • John Hallam : Sir Meles
  • Robert Lang : Chief of Pilgrims
  • Guy Deghy : The priest
  • Michael Gough : The Crazy Monk
  • George Murcell : The captain
  • Eileen Murphy : The gypsy
  • Anthony Nicholls : The Father Superior
  • Joseph O’Conor : St. John’s Stone (under the name of Joseph O’Connor)
  • John Huston : Robert the Father
  • John Franklyn : The pimp
  • Francis Heim : Lieutenant
  • Melvyn Hayes : Comedian
  • Barry Keegan : Farmers’ Chief
  • Nicholas Smith : Pilgrim
  • Antoinette Reuss : The woman in the forest
  • Gilles Segal : Comedian
  • Med Hondo : Comedian
  • Luis Masson : Comedian
  • Eugen Ledebur : Pawnbroker
  • Otto Dworak : Guest of the hostel
  • Max Sulz : Farmer
  • John Veenenbos : Monk
  • Dieter Tressler : Butler
  • Paul Hoer : Farmer
  • Myra Malik : Peasant
  • Michael Baronne : Soldier
  • Yvan Strogoff : Soldier


The film is interesting in more ways than one. By the distribution first. Indeed, it is the first time that John Huston directs his daughter, Anjelica, who is then only 16 years old. Her role is a transposition into the medieval world of her social position as a young girl of wealthy bourgeois family, since she embodies the noble Claudia of Saint John, daughter of the intendant of the King of France Pierre de Saint-Jean. To give him the answer, John Huston chooses Assaf Dayan, the son of Mosche Dayan, Israeli war hero. Assaf Dayan also finds in the film a transposition of his reality – a young man at odds with the paternal ideology and having chosen the life of acrobat – through the character of Héron de Foix.

This last remark leads us to observe the work in its two historical contexts: that of action and that of production. Filmed in 1968, the film can not be boxed in Paris, as originally planned by the director, because of the student uprisings of May. Parallel interesting with the context of the Hundred Years War , where the Paris basin is plunged into chaos, and where the peasants revolt willingly against their lords. Czechoslovakia, a time imagined as an alternative solution, can not agree either because of the invasion of the country by Soviet tanks. It is finally the Austrian campaign that will host John Huston and his team. That makes Walk with love and death an avant-garde ode open to some of the pacifist and reformist themes worn by the actors of May 1968.

Finally, the film stands out from the peplum staging to which are often submitted the Hollywood-inspired medieval works. A certain realism emerges from the shots of John Huston, to the point of forcing the admiration of a medieval historian of the caliber of Jacques Le Goff. Neither embellished nor voluntarily darkened nor authentic since otherwise the subjectivity of the director is fully assumed the xiv th century appears as it was with all periods of history: a tangle of passions, beauty impressive human achievements , of libertarian dogmas and murderous fury.


  • In 2004, Disques Cinémusique released a CD which presents the main themes of the soundtrack to the film A Walk with Love and Death composed by Georges Delerue in arrangements by Robert Lafond, who uses the technique of digital sampling. While remaining faithful to the original spirit of the compositions and taking up a good part of the original instrumentation, this version constitutes a resolutely contemporary and personal reinterpretation of the work. Online presentation.  [ archive ] The purists of film music naturally prefer the soundtrack, published in 2007 at Intrada with 1200 copies, notwithstanding the mediocrity of monophonic recording.

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