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Eden and After (1970)
"L'éden et après" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  20 April 1970 (France)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 413 users  
Reviews: 8 user | 16 critic

A group of French students are drawn into the psychological and sexual games of a mysterious Dutchman. Once they sample his "fear powder" the students experience a series of hallucinations.

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Title: Eden and After (1970)

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Cast

Cast overview:
Catherine Jourdan ...
Violette
Pierre Zimmer ...
Duchemin
Richard Leduc ...
Marc-Antoine
Lorraine Rainer ...
Marie-Eve
Sylvain Corthay ...
Jean-Pierre
Juraj Kukura ...
Boris
Jarmila Kolenicová ...
Sonia (as Jarmila Kolenicova)
Catherine Robbe-Grillet ...
Foolish woman
Frantisek Gervai ...
(as François Gervai)
Ludovít Króner ...
Franc (as Ludwik Kroner)
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Storyline

A group of French students are drawn into the psychological and sexual games of a mysterious Dutchman. Once they sample his "fear powder" the students experience a series of hallucinations.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Details

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Release Date:

20 April 1970 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Eden and After  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Connections

Edited into N. a pris les dés... (1971) See more »

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User Reviews

Alice in S&M Land or The Post-Modern Marquis De Sade
2 July 2002 | by (Edinburgh, Scotland) – See all my reviews

Philosophical thriller or Post-Modern jigsaw or S&M skinflick - or all three at once - Alain Robbe-Grillet's first colour film is a dazzling, at times frustrating experience. Try to imagine Alice in Wonderland crossed with Story of O and you may get some idea of the perverse sensibility at work behind it. Starting off in a labyrinthine, mirror-lined nightclub called Eden, moving on to a disused factory with huge industrial vats full of sperm, ending up on the Tunisian island of Djerba - with, naturally, a detour through a jet-set torture chamber where glamorous naked women are crucified or suspended in cages - Robbe-Grillet takes his wide-eyed and waif-like heroine (Catherine Jourdan) on a spiritual and erotic odyssey to...what exactly? Sorry, but I don't know either.

Nor does Robbe-Grillet seem the tiniest bit inclined to let us in on the secret. According to a mysterious stranger (Pierre Zimmer) who breaks in on Jourdan and her jaded pals, it's something to do with transcending the limits of rational Western consciousness. Finding a darker and more primitive reality. "Break on through to the other side" - or so The Doors might put it. Intriguing enough in a drugged-up late 60s kind of way, but Robbe-Grillet's own personal "doors of perception" don't seem to open very far beyond a spot of mild flagellation, or some Emmanuelle-style sex tourism on a photogenic Third World beach.

At least the film is exquisite to behold. Its imagery is bizarre and erotic and disturbing. Catherine Jourdan - who went on to make even weirder movies with director/husband Alain Fleischer - is a lovely heroine in the tradition of the Marquis de Sade's Justine. She combines the doe-eyed fragility of a Mia Farrow with the icy blonde sensuality of a Catherine Deneuve. As her lover, Richard Leduc is undeniably handsome - but he seems far too sweet and mild-mannered for some seriously nasty sex-games with a blindfold and a bucket of scorpions. As for any ultimate meaning, you may or may not want to work that out. I suspect most of us would be happier not knowing.

Incidentally, Eden and After is one of Robbe-Grillet's MORE linear films in terms of plot - yet it's also one of his hardest to grasp. Perhaps there's a lesson to be learned from that, but - once again - don't ask me what!

David Melville


17 of 25 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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