Prince Myshkin (“the idiot”), who has just returned to Russia, suddenly bursts into a soirée where nobody is expecting him. He has got it into his head to rescue Nastasya Filippovna, the mistress of Totsky, a businessman who in order to further his career has decided to marry another woman, the eldest daughter of his best friend General Yepanchin. Totsky has also arranged to keep his mistress on by marrying her off to Ganya, the general's personal secretary. But Nastasya Filippovna is about to let the cat out of the bag in this urbane comedy.
In L' Idiot, Pierre Léon has chosen to adapt only the first part of Dostoevsky's eponymous novel (1886) since for him “the issues at stake and the passions involved are so complicated that all the characters, rather than trying to understand them, simply charge, heads lowered, into the wall. I thought that this episode would make a contemporary commentary on the novel.” – Viennale
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