Nathalie is the name a Parisian prostitute assumes for a special mission or "private investigation." She is engaged in this unusual and secretive task by a professional, upper-middle-class ... See full summary »
In 16th century Venice, when a merchant must default on a large loan from an abused Jewish moneylender for a friend with romantic ambitions, the bitterly vengeful creditor demands a gruesome payment instead.
The daughter of a brilliant but mentally disturbed mathematician, recently deceased, tries to come to grips with her possible inheritance: his insanity. Complicating matters are one of her father's ex-students who wants to search through his papers and her estranged sister who shows up to help settle his affairs.
This is 1977. Maria Callas; the most famous diva in the world, lives confined in her Paris apartment. Larry Kelly, a producer friend, offers her to sing Carmen in a televised concert. Unfortunately Maria's voice, tired and worn by years and strain, is not what it used to be. Larry knows the way around the problem : a technical stratagem will create the illusion. Maria, disregarding her friend Sarah's warning, agrees with the idea and the show is a tremendous success. With that in mind, Larry now considers a new version of "Tosca". But this time, Maria objects to the subterfuge. Her decision will mark the beginning of the end for the legendary singer... Written by
This is a masterful film; I caught it at a gay film festival, but I don't understand why it hasn't been released. From the opening scenes with Jeremy Irons as an agent and a punk rock song playing in the background, you know you'in in the hands of a masterful storyteller. Zeffirelli structures the plot as the creation of a masterpiece that got away; a fictional film version of "Carmen." The conceit of the film is that Callas (late in her life) has been persuaded to make a film of Carmen (a role she had only recored but never sung). Since her voice is past its primew, she lip-syncs herself. This brilliant premise allows Fanny Ardant (who is simply brilliant as Callas) to lipsync to old Callas recordings. It also enables Zeffirelli to include several spectacular scenes from "Carmen" as part of the plot. I would rank this among the very best films about opera ever made.
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