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After losing her virginity, Isabelle takes up a secret life as a call girl, meeting her clients for hotel-room trysts. Throughout, she remains curiously aloof, showing little interest in the encounters themselves or the money she makes.
Bruno is waiting for his girlfriend Rosette to arrive at his apartment. He is very disturbed because he loves her deeply, but he is infuriated that she is at least 45 minutes late EVERY SINGLE TIME they are supposed to meet, leading him to wonder how can she love him if she is that selfish, and how he can respect himself for putting up with it. He discusses the issue with his friend Pierre while he waits, explaining that he has made the decision to terminate the relationship if she is that late this time. And when Rosette arrives... Written by
Promptitude, so goes the saying, is the politeness of kings and this short film by Ozon covers that subject, a comedy of manners.
As a New Yorker, I am often told by people from outside the City, that New Yorkers have no manners. This, of course is a falsehood. In New York, the assumption is that that people have things to do, places to go and goals to accomplish; that we have the chance, in this life, to regain many lost things, but not time. Thus, rudeness is the wasting of other peoples' time.
This short subject shows this is an attitude not unique to the island of Manhattan. It is the attitude of one of the men in this three-character short subject, who complains that his girlfriend has, in six months, wasted thirty-six hours of his time in making him wait, enough time for Victor Hugo to have written six important poems. I'm on his side, but he does need to chill. Perhaps he should carry a book with him while waiting, perhaps a collection of poetry.
Ozon has shot this simply but classically: long takes with fluid camera movement to maintain composition. thanks to dp Yorick Le Saux, with the length of each shot gradually decreasing in each section to heighten tension. The compositions are simple but elegant and this is fairly typical of Ozon's leisurely pace of storytelling at longer lengths. Color choices are also muted, another hallmark of Ozon's style. In fact, this is a fairly good introduction to Ozon's work. If you're thinking of investigating this director, you could do far worse than try this 30-minute film before essaying works of greater length.
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