Episodic portrait of a criminal, from 1934 until after the war. Roberto Borgo is tough, cool, sardonic, loyal, and deadly. He comes to Marseilles to help his friend Xavier Saratov get out ... See full summary »
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Though I don't know anything about French social contexts during the 1960's and 1970's, though I haven't read any of Duras' works, though I can't figure out what is the message behind this movie, I still feel "Nathalie Granger" is one of the most beautiful films ever made. The beauty of "Nathalie Granger" doesn't come from its visual quality nor the objects it depicts, but from its serenity and the way things are represented. I have to quote the phrase "makes my heart cave in" from "American Beauty" to describe my feeling for this movie, because that's what I really feel, and the feeling I get from "Nathalie Granger" is in a way similar to the feeling I get from the dancing plastic bag scene in "American Beauty,"though "Nathalie Granger" is not didactic at all. As for me who don't understand any symbols hidden in "Nathalie Granger," the great sense of enjoyment I get from this movie comes from its sublimation of simple things and of domestic chores. Duras makes me look at simple things again in such amazement, such wonder, such astonishment of how beautiful they actually are.For me, the table cleaning scene is one of the greatest scenes in cinematic history. Though I might have seen people clearing tables a thousand times in my life, I still feel I have never seen anything like this scene before. Duras can capture the beauty and the charm of simple things into her film, and by representing them like something we have never seen before, she also captures the hearts of the audience. Another thing that impresses me a lot is the performance of Lucia Bose, especially in the scene with Gerard Depardieu. I like the expression on her face very much when she listens to the salesman. The radio broadcast about murderers at large is another thing that I like. There are also many other extraordinarily beautiful and calm scenes in this movie: the tearing up of paper, the piano playing, the characters' walking, the things that they do with leaves, and the shots of a baby carriage. I describe only my feelings here, not the meaning of this movie, because a few books have already deciphered it. Though I'm aware that the feeling I get might not be what Duras intended, I still feel very grateful for her for opening my eyes to see a wonderful kind of beauty, and for giving me a rare and precious sense of "nonconforming serenity."
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