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The theatre world is a familiar setting for the films of Rivette. In Va savoir, the characters, all quick-witted, well-read and cultured types, revolve around each other in a delightful potpourri of theatre, romance and theft. In the end, everything lands on its feet and they all get the partner they deserve, but before then, long filmer Rivette takes two and a half hours to dwell lightly on the vicissitudes around the six protagonists. Camille is an actress with an Italian company that is in Paris to perform a play by Pirandello, Come tu mi vuoi. Her boyfriend Ugo is the director and the company's most important actor. Both have a hidden agenda for their trip to Paris: Camille meets her ex Pierre, a professor of philosophy, while Ugo is secretly researching a supposedly lost play by Goldoni. In the archives, he is assisted by the charming student Do, who steals his heart. In turn, Do has a link with Pierre: her stepbrother, the playwright Arthur, namely steals an expensive ring from ... Written by
Written by Gino Paoli / Alec Wilder
Sung by Peggy Lee
Performed by Lou Levy (piano)
John Pisano (guitar)
Charles Berghofer (bass)
Stan Levey (drum)
Avec l'autorisation de BMG Music Vision et d'EMI Music France See more »
The play within a play ploy is used in Go Figure to excellent effect. The play is an eighteenth century farce performed by an Italian acting troupe visiting Paris. The farce utilizes six characters, the optimal number to engage in romantic mix-ups, flirtations, and other amorous stuff. And lo and behold, Go Figure itself contains six persons who engage in romantic mix-ups, flirtations, and crimes, both physical and of the heart.
There's the lead actress and her stage manager husband; she, who walked out on her now married ex-lover, whom she meets for the first time in three years (as well as his wife). Rounding out the six are two siblings, one a sexy young lady, the other her caddish older brother. There's jewel theft, a hunt for a missing manuscript, jealousy, and the falling in and out of love. And in the backdrop the acting troupe struggles to remains solvent.
All this is served up in, what I would call a French style. Of course I've not seen that many French romantic comedies, but I can state that were this in the hands of an American 'Hollywood' director it would be an entirely different film. And probably not nearly as good. In Rivette's hands all the action and interactions seem natural and light. There's no 'look at me' style of acting; it's almost understated. And this makes for a very enjoyable viewing that loses little on the small screen.
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