France eagerly awaits the day the young king, Louis XV, comes of age and breaks free from the rule of his ministers. The country hopes Louis will bring back glory and prosperity to France. However, he is too preoccupied with the thrills of hunting and gambling to notice the power struggle going on in his own court. Soon the king is introduced to the pleasures of mistresses, and a succession of lovers follows.
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No longer the well-beloved, Louis XV is becoming ever more unpopular - the huge expense of his court and decades of costly warfare having taken their toll. As the discontent grows, Louis seeks refuge in his extravagances and his mistress, the powerful Marquise de Pompadour. Suspicions, plots and rivalry are rife as Louis' daughters and lovers jostle for his attention and their own standing in Court.
At the age of 15, Marie Antoinette, beautiful and charming bride to the impotent Dauphin, is plunged into the intrigue of Versailles. Frivolous and reckless, she flouts the strict and demanding etiquette of the glittering court and discovers the true nature of love, hate and jealousy. But the clouds of revolution are overhead, and Marie Antoinette, who wishes only to enjoy life, learns too late that the price of her enjoyment is very high.