The only sight for sore eyes is Jeanne Moreau washing dishes!
First of all I have to mention that I actually like minimalist movies, I like long takes and sparse dialogue, I like directors that rely the story-telling on the actors' charisma rather than on a very explicative script, and I like movies that emphasize the visual rather than the narrative aspect. But Nathalie Granger fails on every level: the script is virtually missing (it's as if it was stolen and the screenwriter died before shooting the movie), the acting is zero (the talents of Moreau and Depardieu are wasted on washing dishes and talking about washing machines), the editing and cinematography are trite but Duras did have the advantage of the location. Unfortunately the only thing to cling to for the desperate viewer is the furniture in the house and the beauty of the old French château, as it seems the directors' own home. The music score is probably intentionally annoying consisting of random practice bars on the piano.
As far as I have come to understand there is the premise of a story here: Nathalie is a very young girl who falls back on her piano lessons, probably from the bourgeois "fatigue" that was so criticized in the era. The shrink, or school director or whatever, tells her mother that she misbehaves in school and that if her piano lessons are interrupted she will have a lot to lose (actually the tone is gloomier, she says Nathalie is lost, in the sense of kaput, finis, dead and buried). But when you come to watch little Nathalie on screen she appears a very quiet girl, a bit sad and lonely but maybe this just happens because we are dealing with a minimalist film and the fact that she tips over a cart should be seen as an outward manifestation of atavistic rage...!
I really regret having spent an hour and a half on this piece of tedious self-indulgent mess that treats the brilliant Jeanne Moreau as a lonely "desperate housewife" with no name and makes the viewer think that even the cat had a better chance at showing its talents in another movie!
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