Reluctantly, a sulky adolescent returns to her parents' house for yet another boring summer vacation, dabbling in desire and the art of desirability, eventually mixing reality with vision, caged fantasies with the fierce female sexuality.
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Reluctantly, only child Alice Bonnard, a sulky and curious adolescent, returns to her parents' provincial farm house for yet another boring and endless end-of term vacation from boarding school, in the summer of 1963. Sadly, what awaits her there is a farce of a happy family, a strenuous generation gap, lonely outings with her bicycle and an awkward and clumsy transcendental stage between a girl's puberty and a young woman's adolescence. Nevertheless, as if by instinct, Alice the unripe explorer of her budding sexuality, she will find herself infatuated with Jim, a masculine pouting workman in her father's saw mill, dabbling in desire and the art of desirability, self-exploration and autoeroticism as an antidote to boredom. Eventually, young Alice mixing reality with vision, sexual fantasies and the fierce caged female sexuality with every visceral fluid possible, the undefined boundaries of the unfathomable realm of sex become ever so slightly clear, under an immature life's bubbly ... Written by
The calendar inside the doorway of the Bonnard home indicates that it's August, 1964; however, TV shows pertaining to the death of Monseigneur Fernand Maillet and the resignation of George Pompidou's first government suggest that it's only 1963, and a TV broadcast of Jacques Anquetil's fourth Tour de France victory suggests that at least one scene with the calendar is set on July 14 (Bastille Day), 1963. See more »
The first film from Catherine Breillat, the director of "Romance" ('99), that had, upon it's completion in 1975, caused a ratings scandal in France and, beyond being censored, was banned outright. Tellingly, this year (2000) it finally arrived, with little fanfare, on a screen in Paris as, literally across the street at the MK2 Odeon, another controversial film "Baise-Moi" (2000) was causing riots that led to the film being pulled from cinemas.
"Une Vraie Jeune Fille" showcases all of the obsessions that mark Breillat's work through to "Romance" and in a way it is almost more interesting to see the film in retrospect, in light of the films that she made after it, as the lietmotifs present in all were not only prefigured in the first film, but this first film also comments on them.
A girl returns to her parents house from boarding school for the summer. The situation is stifiling and her father's incestuous desires are more than just suggested, though the girl does little to disuade them. She becomes obsessed with a blue collar employee of her father's and his indifference toward her only increases his presence in her numerous sexual fantasies.
The film is visceral and, while the camera is often highly subjective, it maintains, via a cool facade deliberately imitating that of 70's soft porn, that lends it a level of objectivity often entirely absent in American cinema (This film will, incidentally, never reach American screens).
In the same way that "Romance" operates, this film, while exploring detailed fantasies, uses its objectivity to resist any psychoanalyzation of its protagonist. It presents only the events, real events merge with fantasy to lend the pornographic journey/discovery a somewhat hallucinatory aspect
Breillat has found a niche as a filmmaker her films are cool to the touch without being deconstructive, placing her somwhere between Godard and pornography and as a result her films lack a certain element of humanity that prevent them from transcending this niche.
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